With so many great African American movies to choose from, it wasn’t easy coming up with ten favorites.
What’s Love Got to Do with It is a 1993 biopic which tells the life story of Tina Turner.
The Five Heartbeats is a 1991 musical drama film directed by Robert Townsend, who co-wrote the script with Keenan Ivory Wayans. Malcolm X is a 1992 biographical film directed by Spike Lee about the African-American activist and Black Nationalist Malcolm X. Leon I love this list…Where are Sparkle with Irene Cara and Philip Michael Thomas and Poetic Justice with Tupac, Janet Jackson and Regina King? Do The Right Thing would be first closely followed by The Color Purple, I am shocked YOU don’t have Malcolm X first so I realize you took many factors into account!
AND THANK you for listing A Soldiers Story truly one of the most underrated movies of all time! The movie Ray, because of the flawless performance by Jamie Foxx, might be a top 15 contender.
I also think Waiting To Exhale might be due some consideration particularly from a female perspective. Oops made a mistake I meant How Stella Got Her Groove back and not WTE (brothers easily get these two mixed up)!
Lady Sings The Blues, Shaft, New Jack City, and The Best Man were considered for the top 10. The first thing that I thought of when I read the list was most of the movies that most of the movies that Terrance mentioned.
And by the way, I’m pretty sure that I know the answer to the question that you proposed to Shack.
Keep in mind that it’s no way in the world that he would have won an Oscar if he was not good in that particular role.
Leon, very good list but you did forget Waiting to Exhale and DreamGirls, chick flicks but good movies.
But ARITS (A Raisin in The Sun) is one of, if not the most, classic Black dramas ever produced. If you want to fill all background you should select desktop wallpaper size with the same size as your display resolution.

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The ten that I chose as my favorites, are movies with plenty of drama, realism, and great acting. The film stars Omar Epps, Sanaa Lathan, Debbie Morgan, Alfre Woodard, and Dennis Haysbert. It is the story of two next-door neighbors in Los Angeles, California who grew up loving basketball and, eventually, each other. The film stars Angela Bassett and Laurence Fishburne, who both received Oscar nominations for their incredible performances. A black officer is sent to investigate the murder of a black sergeant in Louisiana near the end of World War II.
The film, set in 1964 Chicago, Illinois, stars Glynn Turman and Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs, and featured a soundtrack made up primarily of 1960s Motown hits. The film is the true story of the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry as told from the point of view of its commanding officer, Robert Gould Shaw during the American Civil War.
Director Lee stars in the film, alongside Danny Aiello, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, Giancarlo Esposito, and Bill Nunn. Starring Ice Cube, Cuba Gooding, Jr., Morris Chestnut, Nia Long, Angela Bassett, Regina King and Laurence Fishburne, the film depicts life in poor South Central Los Angeles, California and was filmed and released in the summer of 1991.
Any way here are some to consider Lady sings the blues Sounder The Great white hope Shaft In the heat of the night American Gangster Jungle Fever The Mack New Jack city & The best man. As a matter of fact, I had The Best Man at number 10, but changed my mind at the last minute. So since that is too debatable, here is one you must not have considered since it would surely knock Love & Basketball out of the TT. Don’t recall who CGJ competed against but it had to be a weak field and the Tidwell role, please!
Its impact and ALL Performances in the movie are “crystal clear” in my mind so I admit my bias! I can watch either film over & over as I would most of the movies on the list but Raisin (as well as Heat ITN) are two of my favorite Sidney P.
These are movies that I could watch over and over again, and still enjoy them as if I were watching them for the very first time. So, without further ado, here’s my list of Top 10 favorite African American movies of all time. The film tells the story of a young African American girl named Celie and shows the problems faced by African American women during the early 1900s; including poverty, racism, and sexism.

Denzel Washington was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor for his stunning portrayal of Malcolm X. The film is also notable in that it marks the feature film debuts for Martin Lawrence, and Rosie Perez.
It was nominated for both Best Director and Original Screenplay during the 1991 Academy Awards, making Singleton the youngest person ever nominated for Best Director and the first African–American to be nominated for the award. After reading most of them I must honestly look at the film again and re-evaluate it since I don’t remember much about it! The plot of the film (which is loosely based on the lives of several artists; The Dells, The Temptations, Four Tops, Wilson Pickett, James Brown, Frankie Lymon, Sam Cooke and others) follows the three decade career of the fictional band The Five Heartbeats.
Army regiment with white officers deep in the Jim Crow South, in a time and place where a black officer is unprecedented and bitterly resented by nearly everyone.
The character Celie is transformed as she finds her self-worth through the help of two strong female companions. And as I recall, this film ran “neck and neck” with New Jack City in terms of popularity at the time so where would it rank on your list?
The movie was nominated for three Academy Awards: for Best Picture, Supporting Actor (Adolph Caesar as the murder victim), and Screenplay Adaptation. The song was covered in 1991 by Boyz II Men on the group’s first LP, named Cooleyhighharmony in honor of this film. Three of the film’s star’s, Whoopi Goldberg, Oprah Winfrey, and Margaret  Avery were nominated  for Academy Awards for their brilliant performances. The film stars Morgan Freeman, Andre Braugher, and Denzel Washington who won an Academy Award  for his role as a proud escaped slave named Trip. It was also the film that President Barack Obama took his then girlfriend, Michelle Obama to see on their first date. Cooley High is frequently compared favorably to the 1973 George Lucas film American Graffiti.

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