By now, we have all heard Mo’Nique urging people to boycott Netflix because she feels financially underappreciated. However, I have been a Netflix account holder since 2011 and I have always been satisfied by the content provided for the low cost. In recent years, I am happy to say that Netflix has definitely progressed in a positive direction for their much improved offering of independent films, documentaries, international films and entertainment that highlight the African / African-American experience. Here’s a list of documentaries and movies that will help you to understand, enjoy and appreciate the Black experience.
The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution
Police informants, journalists, supporters and detractors contribute to this documentary look at the history of the controversial Black Panther Party.
What Happened, MISS SIMONE?
Using never-before-heard recordings, rare archival footage and her best known songs, this is the story of legendary singer and activist Nina Simone.
The Queen of Katwe
Bolstered by a devoted mentor, 9-year-old Ugandan girl Phiona Mutesi takes aim at becoming a chess champion in this drama based on a true story.
Interviews with influential Macs, DJs and moguls trace the genre’s dynamic evolution from the 1970s through the 1990’s in this documentary series.
The African Doctor
Happily escaping dictatorship, a Congolese doctor transplants his family to a small French village, where culture shock sets in for everyone.
This documentary celebrates the controversial life, work and legacy of Senegalese filmmaker Ousmane Sembene, the father of African cinema.
Two Mississippi families — one black, one white — confront the brutal realities of prejudice, farming and friendship in a divided World War II era.
In this thought-provoking documentary, scholars, activists and politicians analyze the criminalization of African Americans and the U.S. prison boom.
Featuring interviews, insights and archival footage, this documentary aims to reveal how historical events shaped the music of John Coltrane.
I Am BOLT
Mixing archival footage with present-day interviews, Olympic champion and global icon Usain Bolt opens up about his athletic legacy.
At All Costs
This revealing documentary explores how the high-stakes world of Amateur Athletic Union basketball has professionalized youth sports in America.
I Called Him MORGAN
Decades after serving a prison sentence for killing jazz musician Lee Morgan, his common-law wife, Helen, reflects on their lives and his legacy.
The Negro Soldier
This documentary urged African Americans to enlist and join in the effort to be part of America’s continuing fight in World War II.