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Films About Black Lives in America

The Right Thing

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

I realize I am hardly qualified to say anything on this topic, but it's what I know how to do. If Roger Ebert was right when he called movies an "empathy machine," then perhaps these recommended movies about Black Lives in America can help to open minds, or, for those with already open minds, to continue learning. Hatred and fear stem from ignorance, and understanding and compassion can begin with planted seeds, such as these...

I'll be updating this page from time to time as I discover new and/or notable films.

  1. Baadasssss! (2004, Mario Van Peebles)
  2. Barbershop: The Next Cut (2016, Malcolm D. Lee)
  3. BlacKkKlansman (2018, Spike Lee)
  4. Black Panther (2018, Ryan Coogler)
  5. Chi-Raq (2015, Spike Lee)
  6. Clemency (2019, Chinonye Chukwu)
  7. Creed (2015, Ryan Coogler)
  8. Dear White People (2014, Justin Simien)
  9. Detroit (2017, Kathryn Bigelow)
  10. Devil in a Blue Dress (1995, Carl Franklin)
  11. Dolemite Is My Name (2019, Craig Brewer)
  12. Dope (2015, Rick Famuyiwa)
  13. Do the Right Thing (1989, Spike Lee)
  14. Eve's Bayou (1997, Kasi Lemmons)
  15. Fences (2016, Denzel Washington)
  16. Da 5 Bloods (2020, Spike Lee)
  17. Friday (1995, F. Gary Gray)
  18. 42 (2013, Brian Helgeland)
  19. 4 Little Girls (1997, Spike Lee)
  20. Fruitvale Station (2013, Ryan Coogler)
  21. Get Out (2017, Jordan Peele)
  22. Harriet (2019, Kasi Lemmons)
  23. The Hate U Give (2018, George Tillman Jr.)
  24. Horror Noire: A History of Black Horror (2019, Xavier Burgin)
  25. House Party (1990, Reginald Hudlin)
  26. I Am Not Your Negro (2016, Raoul Peck)
  27. If Beale Street Could Talk (2018, Barry Jenkins)
  28. Juice (1992, Ernest Dickerson)
  29. Just Mercy (2019, Destin Daniel Cretton)
  30. Killer of Sheep (1977, Charles Burnett)
  31. The Last Black Man in San Francisco (2019, Joe Talbot)
  32. Loving (2016, Jeff Nichols)
  33. Malcolm X (1992, Spike Lee)
  34. Marshall (2017, Reginald Hudlin)
  35. Miss Juneteenth (2020, Channing Godfrey Peoples)
  36. Moonlight (2016, Barry Jenkins)
  37. Mudbound (2017, Dee Rees)
  38. O.J.: Made in America (2016, Ezra Edelman)
  39. Night Catches Us (2010, Tanya Hamilton)
  40. Pariah (20011, Dee Rees)
  41. School Daze (1988, Spike Lee)
  42. Selma (2014, Ava DuVernay)
  43. Sorry to Bother You (2019, Boots Riley)
  44. Talk to Me (2007, Kasi Lemmons)
  45. 13th (2016, Ava DuVernay)
  46. Tongues Untied (1989, Marlon Riggs)
  47. To Sleep with Anger (1990, Charles Burnett)
  48. Us (2019, Jordan Peele)
  49. Waves (2019, Trey Edward Shults)
  50. What Happened, Miss Simone? (2015, Liz Garbus)
  51. What's Love Got to Do with It (1993, Brian Gibson)
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