10 Best Old Black Movies

Friday, March 4 by Marco Perez

Here is a list of ten of the best old black movies in no particular order, featuring many of your favorite players including Eddie Murphy, Wesley Snipes, Pam Grier, Ice Cube, Redd Foxx, Whoopi Goldberg and Oprah Winfrey. Without a doubt, many will recognize these classic film titles as some of the best black movies created. 

  1. "Coming to America". Prince Akeem (Eddie Murphy) of the fictional African country Zamunda avoids an arranged marriage on his twenty first birthday and instead travels to America to find the woman of his dreams to make his wife. A star studded cast including Arsenio Hall, James Earl Jones, Eric Lasalle and John Amos make this film one of the funniest black movies ever. 
  2. "The Last Dragon". This cult classic film is one of the ten best old black movies. "Bruce" Leroy Green is a young New Yorker who has dreams of becoming a great martial artist like his idol, kung fu legend Bruce Lee. In pursuit of "The Final Level" of martial arts achievement, Leroy encounters various obstacles along the way, most notably the evil villain Sho'nuff, The Shogun of Harlem.
  3. "Shaft" (original version). This motion picture is widely considered among the best examples of the blaxploitation genre, so much so that in 2000 the Library of Congress selected Shaft for preservation in the United States Film Registry. The "Theme From Shaft" won the Academy Award for Best Original Song.
  4. "The Mack". This is another famous blaxploitation film starring Max Julian and Richard Pryor.  Taking place in Oakland, CA, "The Mack" is a social commentary on pimping and the pitfalls and perks of the lifestyle.
  5. "Do The Right Thing".  This "Spike Lee Joint" was also selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the United States Film Registry and it received the prestigious distinction in its first year of eligibility. In addition to being one of the ten best old black movies, it is considered by many to be one of the greatest and most controversial movies of all time. The film featured and was written, produced and directed by Spike Lee. Do The Right Thing received an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay.
  6. "New Jack City". Wesley Snipes plays the character Nino Brown, a ruthless and powerful drug lord who transforms a New York City public housing project into a drug market during the crack epidemic. The film also features the talents of Mario Van Peebles, Ice-T, Chris Rock, Allen Payne and Judd Nelson. The film was Mario Van Peebles debut as a director.
  7. "Boyz In The Hood". This movie portrays the harsh realities of violence and poverty experienced by youths coming of age in South Central Los Angeles. The film was nominated be the Academy Awards for Best Director and Best Original Screenplay. Director John Singleton has the distinction of being the youngest and the first African American Best Director nominee.
  8. "Foxy Brown". Pam Grier is the lead in one of the best old black movies from the blaxploitation era. She may be considered the first female movie action hero. Foxy Brown seeks revenge for the death of her lover and serves up justice with a bit of brown sugar and spice. 
  9. "Harlem Nights". Three pillars of black comedy, Redd Foxx, Richard Pryor and Eddie Murphy star in this period piece which was nominated for Best Costume Design by the Academy Awards. This is Eddie Murphy's sole directorial effort.
  10. "The Color Purple". The film was nominated for eleven Academy Awards, winning none. Steven Spielberg directs this powerful depiction of the lives of black women during the early 1900's and the difficulties they faced.
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COMMENTS

  1. March 4, 2011 1:10 pm

    www.TheNoirEffect.com

    Definitely disagree with this list. Many do nothing to promote a positive image of black culture.

    What about?

    Roots
    Mississippi Burning
    Malcolm X
    The Story of Jackie Robinson
    They Call Me Mr. Tibbs
    A Raisin In The Sun
    St. Louis Blues
    The Color Purple

    There are so many great Black films that go omitted because they do not fit into the societal box of the violent and angry Black American male/female. It’s time we get proper representation that shows all aspects of our culture and not just the one that mainstream Hollywood continues to fuel.