Black British Filmmaking
A selection of shorts and features by black writers and directors, from milestones of the 60s and 70s to contemporary hits.
For much of the history of British film and TV, black stories were overseen by white filmmakers. By the 1960s, black writers and directors were demanding to tell their own stories, in their own way. This collection celebrates the work of black storytellers who have enriched our understanding of the black British experience. Landmark features like Horace Ové's Pressure (1975) and Menelik Shabazz's Burning an Illusion (1981) stand beside earlier milestones in short filmmaking by Lionel Ngakane and Lloyd Reckord, and 1990s work by Isaac Julien and Julian Henriques. And you'll find hits by leading lights in new black British cinema, including Noel Clarke, Destiny Ekaragha and Debbie Tucker Green. The collection also highlights the work of Ngozi Onwurah, who became the first black British woman director to get a UK theatrical release with her extraordinary debut feature Welcome II the Terrordome (1995), a controversial dystopian fable unavailable for many years.
Musical199877 minsDirector: Julian Henriques
Neeta and her crew rise to dancehall fame in North West London's Caribbean community, in the first Black British musical.
Welcome II the Terrordome
Drama199394 minsDirector: Ngozi Onwurah
A ferocious dystopian nightmare, this was the first film directed by a black British woman to receive a UK theatrical release.
Dog Eat Dog
Comedy200093 minsDirector: Moody Shoaibi
David Oyelowo makes his first feature film role as one of posse of DJs who enrage a local drug baron after stealing his dog.
Drama200591 minsDirector: Menhaj Huda
Noel Clarke and Menhaj Huda’s explosive youth film follows the drug, sex and crime-fuelled antics of a group of West London teens over the course of a single day.
Drama200899 minsDirector: Noel Clarke
After being released from prison following a murder charge, Sam Peel (Noel Clarke) attempts to reboot his life and seek redemption.
Crime2016104 minsDirector: Noel Clarke
A decade after the release of Adulthood, Sam (Noel Clarke) is trying to keep his family safe while simmering old grudges threaten to resurface.
The Hard Stop
Documentary201586 minsDirector: George Amponsah
The story of Mark Duggan, who was shot and killed in Tottenham in 2011, is brought to the screen in this humane, thought-provoking and topical documentary.
Riots and Rumours of Riots
198134 minsDirector: Imruh Caesar
Radical resistance in the postwar British Caribbean community, from the 1948 Nationality Act to the 1958 Brixton riots.
Comedy201694 minsDirector: Sheridan De Myers
Street-smart Hackney comedy about three friends whose unexpected cash windfall funds the mother of all parties; from the talents behind YouTube hit Mandem on the Wall.
Gone Too Far!
Comedy201388 minsDirector: Destiny Ekaragha
Riotous urban comedy adapted from the hit Royal Court play, about a Peckham teen affronted by the arrival of his long-lost Nigerian sibling.
Drama2014105 minsDirector: Debbie Tucker Green
What if an immaculate conception took place in a South London household? Idris Elba stars in a subtle, thought-provoking and original family drama.
Blood Ah Go Run
Documentary198213 minsDirector: Menelik Shabazz
This documentary by Menelik Shabazz (Burning an Illusion) about the response to the New Cross Fire in 1981 prefigures the widespread social unrest later that year.
Animation & Artists Moving Image19974 minsDirector: Victor Olusola Opeyokun
Animated awakening: a young black man in an oppressive urban environment finds a new outlook by embracing his African roots
12 Years a Slave
Biopic2013134 minsDirector: Steve McQueen
Chiwetel Ejiofor and Michael Fassbender star in Steve McQueen’s fearless, Oscar-winning story of a free man who’s sold into slavery.
Smack and Thistle
Drama198997 minsDirector: Tunde Ikoli
When a young black wide-boy rescues a rich white girl from a heroin overdose – and falls for her – he’s drawn into a world of high-class crime.
1988113 minsDirector: Laurens C. Postma
Big Audio Dynamite’s Don Letts made his acting debut in this gripping, gritty 1990 drama of dreads, drugs, and music business corruption.
Thriller200888 minsDirector: Mark Tonderai
A tense and terrifying motorway thriller about a man whose girlfriend is kidnapped by a malevolent trucker, directed by former Radio 1 DJ Mark Tonderai.
Coffee Coloured Children
Biopic198817 minsDirector: Ngozi Onwurah
Experimental monologue about the trauma of racial harassment and self-hate that accompanies growing up mixed-race in Britain.