Have you seen it? 10 Movies You MUST See That are the Epitome of Black History

(from l to r) John Singleton, Cuba Gooding Jr., Ice Cube and Morris Chestnut on the set of “Boyz n the Hood” (Photo: Courtesy of 5th Avenue Cinema)

The best black movies in black history and our all-time favorites, seem to always have the formula of exploring the African-American culture and themes. The top African-American movies often dominate the box office when released, and this is a list of films, that are just as great. So, what are the best black movies of all time? Let’s be real, how can we choose, when the majority of all our black films are “POPPIN”.

However, there are at least 10 must-see movies from the black film community. And if you haven’t seen them, your black card may be at risk of being revoked.

Love & Basketball

black history movies
Sanaa Lathan and Omar Epps in ‘Love & Basketball’ (2000) Written and Directed by: Gina Prince Bythewood

If you haven’t seen this film, regardless of what generation you’re in, you have definitely been sleeping under a rock. “ Love and Basketball,” is that real black love story most women experience, or thirst for a love story like Monica and Quincy. This low budgeted film captured many hearts, and took home over twelve exceptional awards. It still stands as a timeless, classic, black romance.

The Help

black histroy movies
Octavia Spencer and Viola Davis in “The Help” Written and Directed by Tate Taylor (2011)

Originally, “The Help” was a novel by Kathryn Stockett. The story is about African-American women working in white households, in Jackson Mississippi, during the early 1960s. The New York Times released an early review stating, “Affection and intimacy buried beneath even the most seemingly impersonal household connections,” and says the book is a “button-pushing, soon to be wildly popular novel.” The film portrayed the raw and real moments that our ancestors faced in black history, and they shared as well as passed their experience down to be heard, for the greater good, of the black community.  

The Princess and the Frog

Princess and the Frog
The Princess and the Frog (2009) (Photo: IMDB)

When it comes to Disney, everyone knows the worldwide  Disney princesses like Jasmine, Ariel, Cinderella, Snow White, Mulan and Pocahontas. But with all those beautiful shades and colors, Disney for a long time was missing out on having a black princess, and the representation of young black girls was not present. Now, having princess Tiana in the equation, the bigger picture is our babies have a role model to look up too, and I must say, Disney, did a great job.

The Wiz

The Wiz (Photo: IMDB)

Everyone watched The Wizard of Oz during their childhood. However, did you see the BLACK version?  Universal pictures and Motown Productions produced the American musical adventure film, and the classic 1900 children novel was now urban. The film follows the adventures of Dorothy, a Harlem girl who finds herself magically transported to an urban fantasy. Looking back, this film most defiantly helped shape American musicals.

Black Panther

Black Panther (2018)
Black Panther (2018) (Photo: IMDB)

Now, this film is brand spanking new, so you still have time to go catch it. Especially, when this film has broken box office records! In a Thursday night preview of Black Panther, the film scored 25.2 million opening night. That’s the second-biggest MCU Thursday preview/midnight preview ever. Let us not forget how people are rolling out to see Black Panther, dressed in full regalia, making it safe to say, Black Panther is checked off as one for the history books, black history that is.

13th

THE FILM 13TH
13th (2016) (Photo: IMBD)

Can we be real?

Often enough, society likes to hide the true core issue of our black community. We all know in America, African-American people are at a massively high number of incarcerations. Director Ava DuVernay, uncovers an in-depth look at the prison system in the United States, and how it reveals the nation’s history of racial inequality.You can catch this documentary on Netflix.

Good Hair

GOOD HAIR
Good Hair (2009) (Photo: IMDB)

Mostly everyone heard about the “Good Hair documentary starring Chris Rock. Question is: Did you watch it? Chris shared he wanted to go down the journey of understanding hair, because his own little girls were effected by what society says is beautiful. Well, in the past few years, the curly hair care products have expanded! Don’t be surprised, if this documentary sparked a few great black-owned businesses.

The Color Purple

THE COLOR PURPLE
The Color Purple (1985) (Photo: IMDB)

1982 author, Alice Walker, created the novel The Color Purple, which won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, as well as the National Book Award for fiction. Three years later, legends like Whoopi Goldberg, Danny Glover, and  Oprah Winfrey, starred in the biggest film yet. This drama follows the story of a Southern woman who fights to find her identity, after decades of abuse at the hands of her father. The Color Purple was a success at the box office, with over $142 million worldwide.

Boyz n the Hood

Boyz N The Hood (1991)             (Photo: IMDB)

Another black historical film would most certainly be Boyz N the Hood. Director John Singleton, gave America a taste of an American teen, hood drama. Singleton was the youngest and first African-American to be nominated for both, Best Director and Best Original Film. The United States Library of Congress, deemed the film “Culturally, historically significant.” The raw, urban story, will have you cringing at your seat.

Roots

Malachi Kirby in Roots (2016)
Roots (2016) ( Image: IMDB)

Stays woke and watch Roots!

The miniseries is based on author and writer Alex Haley’s 1976 novel Roots: The Saga of an American Family. When the series’ first aired on ABC in 1977, Roots took home nine Primetime Emmy Awards, and they received 37 nominations. It also racked in a Golden Globe and a Peabody Award. In 2016, a remake of the original miniseries aired through the History Channel.