Black History on the Screen: Arts, Business & Culture

From the music you love to the clothes you wear and the food you eat, African Americans have influenced every aspect of our society today. To celebrate their contributions, we've made this list of excellent movies and TV shows that feature the art, music, literature, fashion, cuisine, businesses, and cultural movements originated by Black creatives. Once you've chosen what to watch, use our guide to help your family reflect on the legacy and global imprint of Black culture. And when you're done here, come back to discover more Black history in activism, civics, and social justice; science, technology, engineering, and math; and dance, games, and sports.

Bookmarks: Celebrating Black Voices Poster Image
TV

Bookmarks: Celebrating Black Voices

age 3+

Virtual book club for preschoolers spotlights Black authors.

Network: Netflix (2020)
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Rhymes Through Times Poster Image
TV

Rhymes Through Times

age 3+

Catchy short lessons in Black history for little ones.

Network: Noggin (2021)
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Imba Means Sing Poster Image
MOVIE

Imba Means Sing

age 8+

Vibrant, uplifting docu about African children's choir.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2015)
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We Are the Dream: The Kids of the Oakland MLK Oratorical Fest Poster Image
MOVIE

We Are the Dream: The Kids of the Oakland MLK Oratorical Fest

age 8+

Docu about kids living MLK's legacy gives all the feels.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2020)
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Your Attention Please Poster Image
TV

Your Attention Please

age 8+

Unapologetic tour of Afro-aesthetics; fab docu for all.

Network: Hulu (2020)
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Thunder Soul Poster Image
MOVIE

Thunder Soul

age 9+

Uplifting docu spotlights legendary high school jazz band.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2011)
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High on the Hog Poster Image
TV

High on the Hog

age 10+

Food doc gives powerful new perspective on American history.

Network: Netflix (2021)
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How It Feels to Be Free Poster Image
TV

How It Feels to Be Free

age 10+

Clear-eyed docu celebrates talented women facing racism.

Network: PBS (2021)
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River City Drumbeat Poster Image
MOVIE

River City Drumbeat

age 10+

Uplifting, heartfelt docu about life-changing drum corps.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2020)
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TV

Soul of a Nation

age 10+

Raw but uplifting series on Black life, culture in America.

Network: ABC (2021)
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Liyana Poster Image
MOVIE

Liyana

age 11+

Inspiring, unique film tells two stories of perseverance.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2018)
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Ice Cold: The Untold Story of Hip-Hop Jewelry Poster Image
TV

Ice Cold: The Untold Story of Hip-Hop Jewelry

age 12+

Hip-hop culture doc features drug use, profanity.

Network: YouTube (2021)
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A Raisin in the Sun Poster Image
MOVIE

A Raisin in the Sun

age 12+

Thoughtful, play-based drama examines racism.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2008)
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Back to Natural: A Documentary Film Poster Image
MOVIE

Back to Natural: A Documentary Film

age 13+

Social roots of Black hair history get insightful attention.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2019)
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The Banker Poster Image
MOVIE

The Banker

age 13+

'60s-set drama highlights housing, banking discrimination.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2020)
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The Black Church Poster Image
TV

The Black Church

age 13+

Brilliant docu reveals role of the Black church in America.

Network: PBS (2021)
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Daughters of the Dust Poster Image
MOVIE

Daughters of the Dust

age 13+

Beautiful, slow-paced historical drama; violence, cursing.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 1991)
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Ella Fitzgerald: Just One of Those Things Poster Image
MOVIE

Ella Fitzgerald: Just One of Those Things

age 13+

Life of Queen of Jazz in admiring docu; language.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2019)
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Giving Voice Poster Image
MOVIE

Giving Voice

age 13+

Inspiring docu on writer's legacy; mature themes, language.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2020)
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I Am Not Your Negro Poster Image
MOVIE

I Am Not Your Negro

age 13+

Powerful documentary explores race, art, and activism.

On DVD/Streaming (Release Year: 2017)
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