Illuminating Black History Through Cinema: Films You Should Be Watching This Black History Month.

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Here is our curated list of six captivating films to watch this Black History Month! These films offer diverse narratives, heartfelt stories, and thought-provoking explorations of identity, belonging, and resilience.

1. "Belle" (2013)

Director: Amma Asante

"Belle" takes you back to 18th-century England and tells the extraordinary story of Dido Elizabeth Belle, the mixed-race daughter of a British naval officer and an enslaved African woman. This historical drama explores issues of race, class, and identity as Dido navigates her unique position in society.

2. "Rocks" (2019)

Director: Sarah Gavron

"Rocks" is a heartwarming and emotional coming-of-age drama set in contemporary Hackney, East London. The film follows the life of a teenage girl named Rocks as she grapples with challenges of being abandoned by her mother and being left to care for her younger brother. It offers a poignant and authentic portrayal of the beauty of black girlhood.

3. "Blue's Story" (2019)

Director: Rapman

Meeting a mixed reception upon its release in 2019, "Blue's Story" is a powerful crime drama that explores the challenges faced by young Black men growing up in London. The nuanced dynamics of gang culture in London are portrayed in a new light. Narrated through the medium of rap, this gripping story and compelling narrative, sheds light on the realities and struggles of life in some London communities.

4. "Been So Long" (2018)

Director: Tinge Krishnan

Set against the backdrop of the vibrant North London community of Camden, "Been So Long" is a musical romance that follows the journey of a single mother who embarks on a new romantic adventure. Starring Michaela Coel and Arinze Kene, the film is a wonderfully romantic insight into the magic of London.  The film celebrates love, community, and the power of connection.

5. "Farming" (2018)

A person holding a movie clapper boardDescription automatically generatedDirector: Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje

"Farming" is a raw and intense drama based on the real-life experiences of Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje. It explores the practice of "farming," where black children from immerging immigrant communities were fostered by white families in the UK throughout the 60s,70s and 80’s. The film, told with all the raw emotion of Agbaje’s experience, highlights a part of British history often forgotten.

6. "The Woman King" (2022)

Director: Gina Prince-Bythewood

"The Woman King" is drama exploring a fictionalised retelling of the story of the Dahomey Amazons, an all-female military regiment in the Kingdom of Dahomey, now modern-day Benin. The film sheds light on the incredible strength and resilience of these warrior women. With an incredible cast of actors including, Viola Davis and John Boyega, this gripping picture is an emotional whirlwind!

As we head into the third week of Black History Month, consider immersing yourself in these thought-provoking films that contribute to a deeper understanding of our shared cultural heritage.






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