Racial Awareness

The Swirl’s FAVORITE MULTICULTURAL MOVIES & DOCUMENTARIES

Jackie Brown (1997) Pam Grier is the sexiest woman that white bail bondsman Robert Forster has ever seen, let alone sprung. Samuel L.. Jackson, Robert DeNiro, and Bridget Fonda co-star.
Gone With the Wind  (1939) Margaret Mitchell’s seminal caricature of plantation life at the onset of the Civil War. Hattie McDaniel (Best Supporting Actress) was the first African American to win an Oscar.
Imitation of Life (1959) Lana Turner and Juanita Moore in the saga of a young biracial woman’s denial of her African-American heritage.
Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner (1967) The first interracial couple to meet their future in-laws on the big screen. Sidney Poitier, Katharine Hepburn, Spencer Tracy.
In the Heat of the Night (1968) A Philadelphia homicide detective finds himself in the middle of a murder mystery in a backwater Mississippi town.
Sounder (1972) Cicely Tyson and Paul Winfield, Jr. as a poverty-stricken sharecropping family trying eke out a living during the Depression.
Roots (1977) Television mini-series starring Levar Burton as Knute Kinte, the first prime-time look most white Americans had at slavery.
A Soldier’s Story (1984) Howard E. Rollins investigates an Army crime in World War II. “Haven’t you men ever seen a black officer before?” / “No, sir.”
Driving Miss Daisy (1989) Morgan Freeman as the long-suffering black chauffeur who develops an unlikely friendship with a white matriarch on the way to the Piggly Wiggly.
Passion Fish (1992) Alfre Woodard experiences geographical culture shock and finds romance in the Bayou. Soundtrack is a rich gumbo of zydeco music.
The Tuskegee Airmen (1995) True story of America’s first black fighter squadron and their critical role in World War II.
Higher Learning (1995) John Singleton’s take on life at historically black college and university (HBCU) campuses.
Amistad (1997) A ship carrying enslaved Africans (leader played by Dijon Hounsou)is captured off Long Island in 1839, and an American court declares them free.
The Help (2011) Privileged white debutantes and the black maids who ran their households and raised their children in 1960s Mississippi.
The Loving Story (2011) Documentary about Richard and Mildred Loving, whose then-prohibited interracial marriage was declared legal in a landmark Supreme Court decision.
Muscle Shoals (2013) The little-known collaboration between black recording artists and white studio musicians which produced the 60s mega-hits everyone danced to.
Fences (2016) Denzel Washington directs and stars as a 1950s working-class father in the movie version of August Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play.
Hidden Figures (2016) Fact-based drama detailing the indispensable contributions African-American women mathematicians made in getting the first U.S. astronauts into space and back.

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