Black History Month
Consider these films as milestones on a long and winding road.
See how it was and where it led, as shown in stories of pain and joy, rage and resistance. Drawn from five continents and eight decades, take a first step inside…
Drama1991112 minsDirector: Julie Dash
Julie Dash’s groundbreaking Daughters of the Dust remains urgent and poetic and continues to resonate, most recently inspiring Beyoncé’s Lemonade.
Drama201683 minsDirector: Joseph A. Adesunloye
A young mixed heritage man confronts the psychological complexities of his identity in this essential, truly cinematic discovery for anyone interested in Black British cinema.
Documentary201191 minsDirector: Carol Morley
The power of kinship is explored in Carol Morley’s drama-documentary, drawn from real life and resonant with the way we live now.
Crime1995115 minsDirector: Robert Altman
Robert Altman revisits the 1930s city of his childhood, vividly recreating its jazz clubs, speakeasies, political corruption and lively crime scene.
Comedy199785 minsDirector: Cheryl Dunye
Cheryl Dunye's smart and funny romance - thought to be the first feature directed by a black lesbian - remains a breath of fresh air decades on.
Documentary201888 minsDirector: Matt Wolf
The taped crusader: VHS nerds, media scholars and archive enthusiasts will appreciate this documentary about the African-American activist who recorded 30 years of TV news.
Drama1991105 minsDirector: Isaac Julien
The Queen's Silver Jubilee beats to the sounds of Funkadelic, Sylvester and the O'Jays in Isaac Julien’s feature debut.
Drama1975121 minsDirector: Horace Ové
Hailed as Britain's first black feature film, Pressure is a hard-hitting, honest document of the plight of disenchanted black youths in 1970s London.
Legal and Courtroom drama1981102 minsDirector: Menelik Shabazz
Menelik Shabazz’s pioneering first feature traces the emotional and political growth of a young black couple in Thatcher’s London.
Drama201496 minsDirector: Abderrahmane Sissako
Living in the sand dunes just outside the city of Timbuktu, a cattle herder and his wife find their peaceful existence disturbed by forces attempting to dictate their lifestyle.
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.
Drama201788 minsDirector: John Trengove
A traditional rite of passage ritual forms the backdrop for this tough and complex tale of closeted sexuality in South Africa.
Drama199598 minsDirector: Mathieu Kassovitz
Mathieu Kassovitz’s landmark mid-90s drama throws a cinematic Molotov cocktail at structural racism, police brutality and media manipulation.
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.
Drama198095 minsDirector: Franco Rosso
A young Rastafarian toaster (rapper) with Reggae Sound System Ital Lion, hopes to rise above the trials of his daily life and succeed at a Sound System competition.
Documentary1999101 minsDirector: Wim Wenders
Cuba’s rich and colourful past comes vividly to life in this legendary, Oscar-nominated documentary from director Wim Wenders (Paris, Texas, Wings of Desire).
Crime2013121 minsDirector: Ivan Sen
An Aboriginal cop returns to his hometown to solve the brutal murder teenage girl, uncovering a web of corruption and a growing body count, in Ivan Sen's acclaimed Australian riff on the Western genre.
Drama1970101 minsDirector: Nicolas Roeg
Jenny Agutter plays the teenage girl reliant on a young Aboriginal (David Gulpilil) for her survival, in Nicolas Roeg's stunning Australian outback drama.
Drama1972103 minsDirector: Perry Henzell
The cult classic, acknowledged as the catalyst for the popularisation of reggae in the US, sees Jimmy Cliff traversing the underbelly of Jamaican shanty-town life.