If you’ve already seen Selma and Black Panther numerous times, here are a few suggestions for at home movie viewing that might help connect you and your family around the King Holiday celebration. These are all relatively new films, with one just released in time for the King Holiday, all with a theme around racial justice.
‘Time’ on Amazon
For 18 years Fox Rich filmed thousands of home videos for her imprisoned husband Rob. Because of her involvement (as the getaway driver) in a robbery conducted by her husband and his cousin in 1997, Rich served three and a half years while the court sentenced Rob to 60 years in prison. This touching 81-minute film in Black and White documents the moments Rob lost with his six children and wife. Bradley explores not only how the prison industrial complex defrauds Black citizens of much more than time, but also how one woman remained undaunted in her mission to free her husband.
‘One Night in Miami’ on Amazon.
Directed by Regina King and adapted from the play by the same name, this movies is loosely based on a true event, involves four prominent Black cultural figures in the 1960s ’s — Jim Brown (Aldis Hodge), Cassius Clay (Eli Goree), Sam Cooke (Leslie Odom Jr.), and Malcolm X (Kingsley Ben-Adir) — who met in a Miami hotel room after Clay’s 1964 victory over Sonny Liston. Each actor delivers enjoyable one-liners that come off as genuine. And the dialogue they speak regarding the pathways for racial justice is as heartfelt as it is powerful. This film was just released on Friday.
‘MLK/FBI’ on demand.
You may think you know a lot about King, but Sam Pollard’s “MLK/FBI” reveals just how much his life was traced by the FBI. The film is a complicated portrayal of the civil rights hero, that for some may redefine his humanity. More than about his powerful speeches, this movie explores rumors about King having multiple affairs and questionable tactics of F.B.I. counterintelligence are explored.
‘Mangrove’ on Amazon.
All though “Mangrove” is a British film, the civil rights narrative still resonants. The movie is about the Mangrove Nine, a group of West Indian protesters put on trial in 1970 for inciting a riot. Directed by Steve McQueen, the film spotlights cracks in the British justice system.
‘John Lewis: Good Trouble’ on HBO Max.
Congressman John Lewis’s saying “Get in good trouble, necessary trouble,” inspires the title of Dawn Porter’s documentary about the civil rights icon. The film covers Lewis’s major accomplishments — being the youngest speaker at the 1963 March on Washington; leading the 1965 march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala.; and being elected to Congress — while conveying his lifelong dedication to nonviolent resistance.
‘Da 5 Bloods’ on Netflix
This Spike Lee film is about four Black war veterans returning to Vietnam to recover the remains of Stormin’ Norman (Chadwick Boseman), their fallen commander, and the C.I.A. gold they left buried. Paul (Delroy Lindo), the drama’s tragic lead who never recovered from losing Norman, lends voice to the generation of Black men forced into watching their friends die in a thankless war, only to return home to find civil rights leaders killed as well. “Da 5 Bloods” concludes with a Black Lives Matter chant.
‘All In: The Fight for Democracy’ on Amazon
Stacey Abrams may have been the architect of the recent victory of Joe Biden Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff in Georgia, but her work began long before the 2020 election. In this documentary Abrams laid the groundwork to fight decades of voter disenfranchisement in Georgia, and how those efforts reverberated beyond the state.