Black History Month 2023
OVID.tv is proud to present a deep dive into Black history – from a documentary on the Apollo Theater in Harlem to a history of African-American art, and documentary portraits of Ella Baker, Roy DeCarava, and Okwui Okpokwasili, to prize-winning films by path-breaking filmmakers such as John Akomfrah, Madeline Anderson, St. Claire Bourne and Marlon Riggs. Explore this selection of over 50 films on aspects of the African-American experience.
Directed by Rex Miller • Documentary • 2014 • 83 minutes
Althea Gibson broke records on and off the tennis court. A truant from the rough streets of Harlem, Gibson emerged as a most unlikely queen of the highly segregated tennis world in the 1950s. A sharecropper's daughter, Gibson's family migr...
Directed by Patrick Farrelly, Kate O’Callaghan • Documentary • With Jaha Dukureh • 2017 • 80 minutes
Jaha’s Promise tells the story of a young woman who returns home to campaign against the brutal practices that almost destroyed her life. Jaha Dukureh was subject to female genital mutilation as ...
Love & Diane
Directed by Jennifer Dworkin • Documentary • 2003 • 155 minutes
Jennifer Dworkin’s groundbreaking documentary LOVE & DIANE presents a searingly honest and moving examination of poverty, welfare and drug rehabilitation in the United States today. Filmed in New York City over a five-year period, D...
Love and Solidarity
Directed by Michael Honey • Documentary • 2016 • 38 minutes
LOVE & SOLIDARITY is an exploration of nonviolence and organizing through the life and teachings of Rev. James Lawson. Lawson provided crucial strategic guidance while working with Martin Luther King, Jr., in southern freedom struggles ...
The Great Flood
Directed by Bill Morrison • Documentary • 2013 • 80 minutes
The Mississippi River Flood of 1927 was the most destructive river flood in American history. In the spring of 1927, the river broke out of its earthen embankments in 145 places and inundated 27,000 square miles. Part of its legacy was ...
I Am Somebody
Directed by Madeline Anderson • Documentary • 1970 • 30 minutes
In 1969, black female hospital workers in Charleston, South Carolina went on strike for union recognition and a wage increase, only to find themselves in a confrontation with the state government and the National Guard. Featuring An...
Integration Report 1
Directed by Madeline Anderson • Documentary • 1960 • 20 minutes
INTEGRATION REPORT 1 examines the struggle for black equality in Alabama, Brooklyn and Washington, D.C., incorporating footage by documentary legends Albert Maysles and Ricky Leacock, protest songs by Maya Angelou, and a speech by M...
The Intolerable Burden
Directed by Chea Prince • Documentary • 2003 • 56 minutes
In the autumn of 1965, sharecroppers Mae Bertha and Matthew Carter enrolled the youngest eight of their thirteen children in the public schools of Drew, Mississippi. Their decision to send the children to the formerly all white schools wa...
Long Story Short
Directed by Natalie Bookchin • Documentary • 2016 • 45 minutes
In the moving and immersive film LONG STORY SHORT, over 100 people at homeless shelters, food banks, adult literacy programs, and job training centers in Los Angeles and the Bay Area in Northern California discuss their experiences o...
The Nine Muses
Directed by John Akomfrah • Documentary • 2010 • 94 minutes
Structured as an allegorical fable set between 1949 and 1970, THE NINE MUSES is comprised of nine overlapping musical chapters that mix archival material with original scenes. Together, they form a stylized, idiosyncratic retelling of t...
Sermons and Sacred Pictures
Directed by Lynne Sachs • Documentary • 2004 • 29 minutes
In association with the Center for Southern Folklore, SERMONS AND SACRED PICTURES profiles Reverend L.O. Taylor, a Memphis-based Baptist minister who in the 1930s and 40s built a fiery reputation by lacing his sermons with parables, fable...
Directed by Brian Chinhema • Documentary • 2011 • 77 minutes
Multiracial people are the fastest growing demographic in America, yet there is no official political recognition for mixed-race people. MULTIRACIAL IDENTITY explores the social, political, and religious impact of the multiracial movem...
Power to Heal
Directed by Charles Burnett and Daniel Loewenthal • Documentary • 2018 • 56 minutes
POWER TO HEAL tells a poignant chapter in the historic struggle to secure equal and adequate access to healthcare for all Americans. Central to the story is the tale of how a new national program, Medicare, was u...
Ghosts of Attica
Directed by Brad Lichtenstein • Documentary • With Susan Sarandon • 2001 • 90 minutes
Attica. Like Watergate and Vietnam, it is an icon of recent history. Gov. Rockefeller's brutal re-taking of the prison - a nine-minute, 1600-bullet assault that took the lives of 29 inmates and 10 guards - put ...
Guns and Mothers
Directed by Thom Powers • Documentary • 2003 • 53 minutes
Two advocacy groups, The Million Moms and the Second Amendment Sisters, are diametrically opposed on gun control, but they agree on one point: mothers will and should have a voice in determining gun control policy in America. GUNS and MOT...
Directed by Chivas DeVinck • Documentary • 2018 • 99 minutes
Syl Cheney-Coker (author of The Last Harmattan of Alusine Dunbar, which won the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize) and Niyi Osundare (recipient of the Nigerian National Merit Award, Nigeria’s highest recognition for distinguished academic an...
A Good Man (Bill T. Jones)
Directed by Bob Hercules,Gordon Quinn • Documentary • With Nana Amoah,
Bill T. Jones,
Lindsay Jones • 2011 • 86 minutes
A Good Man follows acclaimed director/choreographer Bill T. Jones (Last Supper at Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Still/Here, FELA!) as he and his company create their most ambitious work, ...
Directed by Jonathan Olshefski • Documentary • 2017 • 105 minutes
Filmed with vérité intimacy for nearly a decade, Quest is the moving portrait of the Rainey family living in North Philadelphia.
Beginning at the dawn of the Obama presidency, Christopher “Quest” Rainey and his wife Christine’a ...
The Last Angel of History
Directed by John Akomfrah • Documentary • 1996 • 45 minutes
John Akomfrah, director of Seven Songs of Malcolm X, returns with an engaging and searing examination of the hitherto unexplored relationships between Pan-African culture, science fiction, intergalactic travel, and rapidly progressing c...
Directed by Tirtza Even • Documentary • With Lakim Carney, Chrissy Garcia, Faizan Hasnain • 2016 • 77 minutes
"Natural Life" is a feature length experimental documentary challenging inequities in the U.S. juvenile justice system by depicting, through documentation and reenactment, the stories of...
A New Color: The Art of Being Edythe Boone
Directed by Mo Morris • Documentary • With Edythe Boone • 2018 • 56 minutes
Long before Black Lives Matter became a rallying cry, Edythe Boone embodied that truth as an artist, an educator, and a great-grandmother. When a personal tragedy ignites a national outcry, everything that Edythe has wor...
How to Eat Your Watermelon in White Company (And Enjoy It!)
Directed by Joe Angio • Documentary • With Spike Lee, Mario Van Peebles, St. Clair Bourne, Gil Scott-Heron • 2005 • 85 minutes
Melvin van Peebles’ remarkable life story reveals an artist and a man whose groundbreaking impact on film, politics and pop culture remains, forty-five years after the r...
Let the Fire Burn
Directed by Jason Osder • Documentary • 2013 • 95 minutes
In the astonishingly gripping Let the Fire Burn, director Jason Osder has crafted that rarest of cinematic objects: a found-footage film that unfurls with the tension of a great thriller. On May 13, 1985, a longtime feud between the city ...
Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien
Directed by Marlon Riggs • Documentary • 1992 • 38 minutes
Through music, poetry and quiet, at times, chilling self-disclosure, five positive black gay men speak of their individual confrontation with AIDS, illuminating the difficult journey black men throughout America have made in coping with ...