Black History Month is coming to a close...it's important to not only watch films that center the narratives of the Black experience, but also share them with others and spread awareness. By increasing the demand for black historical content, we can help ensure that more stories like these are told and that our voices and experiences are represented. So, let's continue to watch, share, and support black films and stories! Here are my top films to watch as we celebrate the dopeness of being BLACK and honor our greatness.
Malcolm X directed by Spike Lee - This biographical film tells the story of Malcolm X, a civil rights activist who was assassinated in 1965. It showcases his journey from a criminal to a prominent leader in the civil rights movement, his transformation after embracing Islam, and his message of self-empowerment and black pride.
The Spook Who Sat by the Door is an important film that tells the story of Dan Freeman, a black man who becomes the first African-American CIA officer, but then uses his training to lead a revolution against the government. The film portrays the struggle for black liberation and the fight against systemic racism and oppression. It's a powerful and thought-provoking movie that sheds light on the ongoing struggle for racial justice and equality.
Hidden Figures - This movie celebrates the achievements of three African-American women who worked at NASA and played a pivotal role in the success of the first American manned orbit around the Earth. It highlights the discrimination and challenges they faced as women of color in a predominantly white male workforce and inspires viewers to pursue their dreams, regardless of their background.
I Am Not Your Negro - Based on James Baldwin's unfinished manuscript, this documentary explores the history of racism in America and its impact on African-American identity. It features archival footage, photographs, and Baldwin's own words to provide a powerful commentary on the history of racism in America and its ongoing effects.
42 - This biographical sports drama portrays the life of Jackie Robinson, the first African-American to play in Major League Baseball. It shows his struggles with racial prejudice on and off the field and his role in breaking down the color barrier in professional sports.
The Great Debaters - This movie is set in the 1930s and follows the journey of a debate team from a historically black college as they compete against white universities. It showcases the challenges and opportunities for black intellectuals during that era and the power of education and critical thinking.
When They See Us - This Netflix miniseries tells the story of the Central Park Five, five young black and Hispanic men who were falsely accused and convicted of raping a white woman in New York City in 1989. It exposes the injustice and racial prejudice within the American criminal justice system and the devastating impact it can have on innocent individuals and their families.
Judas and the Black Messiah - This biographical drama film follows the story of Fred Hampton, the chairman of the Black Panther Party in the late 1960s, and his betrayal by an FBI informant. It portrays the government's efforts to suppress the black power movement and highlights the need for continued activism and resistance against systemic racism and oppression.
By learning from the past and working towards a more just and equitable society, we can help to shape the narrative of our collective history. Thank you for reading my top must-watch films for Black History Month, continue to support black artists and storytellers and share this message of empowerment and inspiration with someone you know.