Parents' Guide to

Malcolm X

By Scott G. Mignola, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Insightful and well-rounded portrait of Malcolm X.

Movie PG-13 1992 201 minutes
Malcolm X Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 14+

Based on 6 parent reviews

age 14+

Best movie about Malcolm X

A great movie to learn a quick over view of the life and work of Malcolm X.
age 11+

One of the greatest stories of redemption ever.

This movie is a great adaptation of one of the greatest books ever written about one of the greatest stories of redemption ever. Definitely a movie everyone should see.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (6 ):
Kids say (3 ):

Based on The Autobiography of Malcolm X, Spike Lee's chronicle of the rise and fall of the outspoken -- and still-controversial -- civil rights leader isn't the angry film one might expect. Perhaps MALCOLM X's greatest achievement is the fair-mindedness with which it treats its subject. Lee is honest in giving us a flawed hero, a man blinded by his cause, a leader unafraid to publicly denounce his own philosophies as he awakens to new and more hopeful ones. Denzel Washington turns in a stunning, dignified performance without ever seeming like he's acting. As his wife, Angela Bassett is also outstanding, as are Albert Hall and Al Freeman Jr. as the men who give his life purpose.

The movie does an excellent job, too, of stressing the importance of education, reminding us that we each have the power not just to change our own life, but the lives of many. That's a terrific seed to plant in the heads of high school students looking toward college and a future career. As with Gandhi, another outstanding true story with similar themes, the movie's lengthy running time doesn't seem at all extravagant, but rather necessary to give a complex life the dimension it deserves.

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