The movies we watch can shape our ideas of people, culture and history. For Black History Month 2022, we are recommending five films based on true stories to watch this month. Why not gather some friends this week and give one a try!
FIVE FILMS TO WATCH BASED ON TRUE STORIES
1) King Richard is a sports drama centred on how Richard Williams, US tennis stars Serena and Venus’ dad, mentors and coaches them into brilliance. Through vision and sheer perseverance, he brings his family from living in Compton to multi-million dollar sports triumphs.
2) Hidden Figures focuses on the true story of female African-American mathematicians who played a vital role in NASA when the US was racing against Russia to have a man in space. Applauded now as American heroes, these three women were Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, and Katherine Gobels Johnson These ladies ‘served as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in US history’.
3) The Great Debaters tells the story of how Melvin B. Tolson inspired a group of students to form their school’s first debate team. As a professor at Wiley College in 1935, he coached and led them to challenge Harvard in the national championships.
4) Selma is a must-watch as it navigates how Martin Luther King Jr. and the civil rights movement secured equal voting rights for Black people. The march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama in 1965 – a 54-mile stretch – was a pivotal turning point in the civil rights movement. Our greatest heroes face challenges as they push for change, and this movie is an insight into the cost and strength it takes to believe for more.
5) A United Kingdom is the story of King Seretse Khama of Botswana and how loving a British white woman, Ruth Williams, brought instability in his kingdom. His marriage was deemed as ‘controversial’ by man and led to both political and diplomatic unease.