Parents' Guide to


By Brian Costello, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Classic miniseries is essential viewing for mature teens.

Movie NR 1977 573 minutes
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This iconic miniseries brings American history to life in ways that history textbooks so often fail to do. The horror, degradation, and violence of slavery are brought into painfully clear focus, so viewers experience the pain that Alex Haley's ancestors felt. By doing so, it becomes the pain of a nation, the reverberations of which we still feel to this day. But, beyond all this brutality, Roots offers hope in the form of an indomitable human spirit, passed from generation to generation, as the story of a people who never forgot their African home and whose culture somehow transcends so much suffering.

For families curious about where we were and how we got here, Roots is essential viewing. It was a best-selling book and a highly regarded miniseries when it was first broadcast in 1977, and it has stood the test of time. This miniseries should still inspire discussion among families about history, genealogy, and the society in which we live.

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