Movies About Racism

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Movies About Racism

Ever viewed these Movies About Racism? We guarantee you'll find some new movies. Here are 25 of the top ones.

Schindler's List (1993)

Schindler's List
★★★★
★★★★
3.6 out of 4 stars

From Steven Spielberg, starring Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Kingsley, Caroline Goodall
Rated R

Schindler's List is a 1993 American epic historical drama film directed by Steven Spielberg. It is based on the novel Schindler's Ark by Australian novelist Thomas Keneally. The film follows Oskar Schindler, a Sudeten German businessman who saved the lives of more than a thousand mostly Polish-Jewish refugees during the Holocaust by employing them in his factories. It stars Liam Neeson as Schindler, Ralph Fiennes as Nazi SS officer Amon Göth, and Ben Kingsley as Schindler's Jewish accountant Itzhak Stern. The film is set in Kraków, Poland, during World War II. It depicts the real-life efforts of Schindler to protect his Jewish employees from the Nazi concentration camps. The film includes scenes of violence, murder and death, depicting the spread of the Holocaust and the atrocities committed by the Nazis. The film was a critical and commercial success, earning twelve Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Original Score, making it the first and only film to win in all three categories. It also won seven BAFTAs and three Golden Globes.

The Green Mile (1999)

The Green Mile
★★★★
★★★★
3.4 out of 4 stars

From Frank Darabont, starring Tom Hanks, Michael Clarke Duncan, David Morse, Bonnie Hunt
Rated R

The Green Mile is a 1999 American period drama fantasy film directed by Frank Darabont, based on the 1996 Stephen King novel of the same name. It stars Tom Hanks as Paul Edgecomb, the head guard of a death row prison block in the 1930s, who develops a strong bond with an inmate, John Coffey, played by Michael Clarke Duncan. Coffey is sentenced to death for a crime that he did not commit, and his mysterious supernatural powers bring hope and healing to Edgecomb and the inmates on death row. Edgecomb eventually comes to believe in Coffey's innocence and attempts to free him from his fate. The film also stars David Morse, Bonnie Hunt, and James Cromwell. It follows a miraculous journey filled with heartache, hope, and redemption.

American History X (1998)

American History X
★★★★
★★★★
3.4 out of 4 stars

From Tony Kaye, starring Edward Norton, Edward Furlong, Beverly D'Angelo, Jennifer Lien
Rated R

American History X is an American drama film directed by Tony Kaye and written by David McKenna. The story follows Derek Vinyard (Edward Norton), a former neo-Nazi skinhead who is released from prison after serving a three-year sentence for voluntary manslaughter. Upon his release, Derek is determined to prevent his younger brother Danny (Edward Furlong) from following in his footsteps. In order to do so, Derek must confront the racism of both his past and present, while trying to find redemption in a world that he had once rejected. The film explores themes of racism, redemption, and the power of brotherly love.

Django Unchained (2012)

Django Unchained
★★★★
★★★★
3.4 out of 4 stars

From Quentin Tarantino, starring Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Leonardo DiCaprio, Kerry Washington
Rated R

Django Unchained is a 2012 American revisionist Western film written and directed by Quentin Tarantino. Set in the Old West and Antebellum South, it is a highly stylized tribute to Spaghetti Westerns, in particular the 1966 Italian film Django by Sergio Corbucci, whose star Franco Nero has a cameo appearance. The film follows the story of Django, a freed slave (Jamie Foxx) who teams up with bounty hunter Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz) to rescue his wife from a ruthless Mississippi plantation owner (Leonardo DiCaprio). Along the way, Django and Schultz battle a number of adversaries, including a gang of bounty hunters led by a viciously racist sheriff (Walton Goggins). As he seeks vengeance, Django discovers that he possesses a great talent for gunslinging, and ultimately sets out to rescue his beloved wife and to exact his revenge.

Inglourious Basterds (2009)

Inglourious Basterds
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From Quentin Tarantino, starring Brad Pitt, Diane Kruger, Eli Roth, Mélanie Laurent
Rated R

Inglourious Basterds is a 2009 war film written and directed by Quentin Tarantino. It is a fictionalized version of World War II, and tells the story of two plots to assassinate Nazi Germany's leadership. The first plot is set in Nazi-occupied France and is led by First Lieutenant Aldo Raine (Brad Pitt), a ruthless leader of a group of Jewish American soldiers known as the "Basterds". The Basterds mercilessly hunt down and kill Nazis, and eventually plan to assassinate Hitler. The second plot follows a young Jewish woman, Shosanna Dreyfus (Mélanie Laurent), who seeks revenge on the Nazis who murdered her family. She disguises herself as a young Frenchwoman, and plots to blow up the theater where the Nazi high command are gathered for the premiere of a propaganda film. In the end, both plots collide and the Basterds and Shosanna succeed in their mission, leading to a dramatic and bloody climax.

To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)

To Kill a Mockingbird
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From Robert Mulligan, starring Gregory Peck, John Megna, Frank Overton, Rosemary Murphy
Rated Approved

To Kill a Mockingbird is a 1962 American legal drama film directed by Robert Mulligan. The film is based on Harper Lee's 1960 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name. The film stars Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch, a lawyer in the fictional town of Maycomb, Alabama, who is tasked with defending an African-American man, Tom Robinson (played by Brock Peters), who has been accused of rape by a white woman, Mayella Ewell (played by Collin Wilcox). Against a backdrop of racism, Finch works to prove Robinson's innocence, despite threats of violence from many white citizens of the town. The film also stars Mary Badham and Phillip Alford as Finch's children, Scout and Jem, as well as Robert Duvall as Boo Radley, a mysterious recluse who is a friend to the Finch family. Through the story of the Finch family, the film explores themes of courage, justice, and compassion.

Green Book (2018)

Green Book
★★★★
★★★★
3.3 out of 4 stars

From Peter Farrelly, starring Viggo Mortensen, Mahershala Ali, Linda Cardellini, Sebastian Maniscalco
Rated PG-13

Green Book is a 2018 American biographical comedy-drama written by Nick Vallelonga, Brian Hayes Currie and director Peter Farrelly. The film stars Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali as an Italian-American bouncer and Jamaican-American classical pianist respectively, who form an unlikely friendship while on a tour of the deep south in 1962. The film is based on the real-life story of Tony Vallelonga and Dr. Donald Shirley, and follows the two men as they navigate the racism and segregation of the era. The film takes its name from The Negro Motorist Green Book, which was an annual guidebook that provided African-Americans with information on which establishments in the South were safe for them to visit. Green Book was released to critical acclaim, winning three Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

12 Years a Slave (2013)

12 Years a Slave
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Steve McQueen, starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Kenneth Williams, Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt
Rated R

12 Years a Slave is a 2013 British-American historical drama film directed by Steve McQueen, based on the true story of Solomon Northup, a free African-American man who was kidnapped in Washington, D.C. in 1841 and sold into slavery. The film follows Northup's struggles to survive and maintain his dignity over the course of twelve years. After being betrayed and sold into slavery, he is sent to Louisiana where he is put to work as a field hand on a plantation owned by a cruel slave master. Along the way, he meets a variety of characters, both white and black, who are all navigating the same difficult world of slavery. Through his struggles, he manages to keep his spirit alive and eventually gain his freedom. 12 Years a Slave is a powerful examination of the horrors of slavery, and a testament to the strength of the human spirit.

Gran Torino (2008)

Gran Torino
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Clint Eastwood, starring Clint Eastwood, Bee Vang, Christopher Carley, Ahney Her
Rated R

Gran Torino is a 2008 drama film directed by and starring Clint Eastwood. The story follows retired Korean War veteran Walt Kowalski, a cantankerous widower. When a Hmong teenager named Thao attempts to steal Walt’s prized 1972 Gran Torino, Walt sets out to protect his neighborhood from the gangs that are trying to recruit Thao. As Walt and Thao grow closer, the film tells a story of redemption and tolerance set against a backdrop of racial tensions in a changing Detroit. Ultimately, Walt helps Thao and his family to stand up against the gangs, while finding new meaning in his own life in the process.

The Help (2011)

The Help
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Tate Taylor, starring Viola Davis, Emma Stone, Octavia Spencer, Bryce Dallas Howard
Rated PG-13

The Help is a 2011 film directed by Tate Taylor and based on the best-selling novel of the same name by Kathryn Stockett. Set in Jackson, Mississippi in the early 1960s, the film follows a young white woman, Skeeter Phelan, who decides to write a book from the perspective of the African-American maids who work for white families. In the process of writing the book, Skeeter befriends two of the maids, Aibileen Clark and Minny Jackson, and together they help to bring about a social revolution in the town as they reveal the racism and inequality that African-Americans live with every day. The film is a powerful story of courage, friendship and the determination of a group of women to stand up for what they believe in and change their community.

Do the Right Thing (1989)

Do the Right Thing
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Spike Lee, starring Danny Aiello, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, Richard Edson
Rated R

Do the Right Thing is a 1989 American comedy-drama film written, produced, and directed by Spike Lee. Set on the hottest day of the summer, the film examines various personal and social issues in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Bed-Stuy. At the center of the film is Mookie (played by Lee), a young Black man who works at a local pizzeria owned by an Italian-American family. As the film progresses, tensions between the neighborhood’s Black and Italian-American residents mount and eventually turn violent. Through the use of humor, poetry, and music, the film examines issues of racism, gentrification, poverty, and police brutality.

In the Heat of the Night (1967)

In the Heat of the Night
★★★★
★★★★
3.2 out of 4 stars

From Norman Jewison, starring Sidney Poitier, Rod Steiger, Warren Oates, Lee Grant
Rated Approved

In the Heat of the Night is a 1967 movie directed by Norman Jewison, starring Sidney Poitier and Rod Steiger. Based on the novel of the same name, the film follows Virgil Tibbs, an African American detective from Philadelphia, who finds himself in a small town in Mississippi. Tibbs is asked to help solve a murder case, despite the fact that he is from out of town and is facing racial prejudice from the local sheriff. Through his work, Tibbs is able to put together the clues and eventually solve the case with the help of the sheriff. The film deals with the issues of racism and prejudice, as Tibbs faces obstacles in his pursuit of justice. The film won five Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (1967)

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Stanley Kramer, starring Spencer Tracy, Sidney Poitier, Katharine Hepburn, Katharine Houghton
Rated Approved

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner is a 1967 romantic comedy-drama film directed by Stanley Kramer, starring Spencer Tracy, Sidney Poitier, and Katharine Hepburn. The film follows the story of a young interracial couple, John Prentice (Poitier) and Joanna (Katharine Houghton), who announce their intention to marry while visiting the home of Joanna's parents, Matt and Christina Drayton (Tracy and Hepburn). The Draytons are forced to confront their feelings on race and class issues in the midst of this surprise engagement. Though the Draytons initially struggle to accept John, who is African American, as a potential son-in-law, they ultimately recognize the moral value of the couple's love for each other and give their blessing for the marriage. The film is significant for its frank, progressive discussion of racial issues in 1960s America and the dinner table conversation between the characters is often remembered as one of the most iconic moments in cinema.

A Bronx Tale (1993)

A Bronx Tale
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Robert De Niro, starring Robert De Niro, Chazz Palminteri, Lillo Brancato, Francis Capra
Rated R

A Bronx Tale is a 1993 American drama film directed by Robert De Niro and written by Chazz Palminteri. The film stars Palminteri, Robert De Niro, and Lillo Brancato. The film follows Calogero Anello, a young boy living in the Bronx, who is caught between the temptations of organized crime and the values of his hardworking father. Calogero is taken under the wing of a local mob boss, Sonny LoSpecchio, who provides guidance, protection, and an opportunity for advancement. Though Calogero is loyal to his father, he begins to find himself drawn to Sonny's world, and the conflict between these two forces ultimately threatens to tear Calogero's world apart. The film focuses on themes of loyalty and morality, and examines the challenge of holding on to one's values in an environment where crime and corruption are rampant. It was both a critical and commercial success, earning two Academy Award nominations and grossing over $17 million at the box office.

Mississippi Burning (1988)

Mississippi Burning
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Alan Parker, starring Gene Hackman, Willem Dafoe, Frances McDormand, Brad Dourif
Rated R

Mississippi Burning is a 1988 crime drama directed by Alan Parker and starring Gene Hackman and Willem Dafoe. The film follows two FBI agents, played by Hackman and Dafoe, as they investigate the disappearance of three civil rights workers in a racially segregated Mississippi town. The agents discover a web of political and social corruption, as well as a range of reactions from the town's citizens. The agents eventually find the bodies of the three missing activists, and their investigation leads to a grisly conclusion. The film is a powerful and controversial look at the ugly realities of racism and violence in the South during the 1960s and is a testament to the strength of the Civil Rights Movement.

Crash (2004)

Crash
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Paul Haggis, starring Don Cheadle, Sandra Bullock, Thandiwe Newton, Karina Arroyave
Rated R

Crash is a 2004 drama film written and directed by Paul Haggis. The film stars an ensemble cast that includes Sandra Bullock, Don Cheadle, Matt Dillon, Jennifer Esposito, Brendan Fraser, Terrence Howard, Thandie Newton, and Ryan Phillippe. Set in Los Angeles, the film revolves around the events that transpire after an accident involving a white Hollywood director, his African-American wife, a Persian store owner, and two black police officers. The film explores themes of racism, prejudice, and social class, and shows how different people view the world through their own unique lenses. Through a series of interconnected stories, Crash explores the intersection of race, class, and gender in modern society and how they can lead to misunderstanding and conflict. Ultimately, the film shows that even the most seemingly insignificant events can have a lasting effect on our lives.

Get Out (2017)

Get Out
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Jordan Peele, starring Daniel Kaluuya, Allison Williams, Bradley Whitford, Catherine Keener
Rated R

"Get Out" is a 2017 psychological horror/thriller film written, produced, and directed by Jordan Peele. The film follows protagonist Chris Washington, a young African-American man who visits his white girlfriend's family estate and discovers a disturbing secret. It turns out that the family and their community are participating in a disturbing racist ritual in which they use mind-controlling hypnosis to "get out" the souls of black people, and replace them with their own. As he struggles to escape, Chris is forced to confront his own fears and anxieties about race and racism in a society that continues to deny its presence. With its clever blend of horror, comedy, and social commentary, "Get Out" has become a cult classic, earning over $250 million at the box office and receiving an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.

Ray (2004)

Ray
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Taylor Hackford, starring Jamie Foxx, Regina King, Kerry Washington, Clifton Powell
Rated PG-13

Ray is a biographical musical drama film directed by Taylor Hackford which follows the life of the legendary American musician Ray Charles. The film follows the story of Charles' struggles with poverty and addiction, as he becomes one of the most influential figures in the world of music. The film stars Jamie Foxx in the lead role and Kerry Washington, Regina King, and Clifton Powell in supporting roles. The soundtrack features a variety of classic Charles songs, as well as several performances by Foxx. The film received commercial and critical success, receiving five Academy Award nominations and winning two, including Best Actor for Jamie Foxx.

Malcolm X (1992)

Malcolm X
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Spike Lee, starring Denzel Washington, Angela Bassett, Delroy Lindo, Spike Lee
Rated PG-13

Malcolm X is a biographical film directed by Spike Lee, starring Denzel Washington in the title role. The film follows the life of Malcolm X, an African-American Muslim minister and human rights activist, who is assassinated in 1965. The film chronicles his early life, his criminal activities, his conversion to Islam, and his rise to prominence as a spokesperson for the Nation of Islam in the 1950s and 1960s. It also covers his increasing political activism and the rift between him and the Nation, as well as his assassination in 1965. Malcolm X is considered a classic, and is widely seen as an important cultural and historical document.

The Color Purple (1985)

The Color Purple
★★★★
★★★★
3.1 out of 4 stars

From Steven Spielberg, starring Danny Glover, Whoopi Goldberg, Oprah Winfrey, Margaret Avery
Rated PG-13

The Color Purple is a 1985 American drama film directed by Steven Spielberg and based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name by Alice Walker. It tells the story of an African-American woman living in rural Georgia in the early 20th century. Celie, played by Whoopi Goldberg, is a young woman who has suffered abuse from her father and is now forced into a loveless marriage with a man who mistreats her. Through the course of her struggles, she finds strength and friendship through the other women in her life, and ultimately learns to love and forgive. The film features an acclaimed cast of actors, including Danny Glover and Oprah Winfrey, and has received numerous awards and nominations, including 11 Academy Award nominations.

BlacKkKlansman (2018)

BlacKkKlansman
★★★★
★★★★
3 out of 4 stars

From Spike Lee, starring John David Washington, Adam Driver, Laura Harrier, Topher Grace
Rated R

BlacKkKlansman is a 2018 American biographical crime drama directed by Spike Lee. Set in the 1970s, the film follows Ron Stallworth, an African American police officer from Colorado Springs, Colorado as he infiltrates and exposes the Ku Klux Klan. With the help of Jewish detective Flip Zimmerman and other members of the Colorado Springs police force, Ron goes undercover to investigate and disrupt the Klan's activities. Along the way, he learns about the violent history of racism and prejudice in the United States and is confronted with the consequences of his actions. The film is based on real events, drawing heavily from Stallworth's memoir Black Klansman. BlacKkKlansman was nominated for six Academy Awards and won an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay.

Fruitvale Station (2013)

Fruitvale Station
★★★★
★★★★
3 out of 4 stars

From Ryan Coogler, starring Michael B. Jordan, Melonie Diaz, Octavia Spencer, Kevin Durand
Rated R

Fruitvale Station is a 2013 American biographical drama film written and directed by Ryan Coogler. The film is based on the true story of Oscar Grant, a 22-year-old African American man from Hayward, California, who was fatally shot by BART police officer Johannes Mehserle at the Fruitvale BART station in Oakland, California, on January 1, 2009. It stars Michael B. Jordan as the main character, Oscar Grant, and details the events that lead up to his death. On its release, Fruitvale Station was acclaimed by critics, who praised its story and acting, and it won the Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Award for U.S. dramatic film at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. The film was released in theaters on July 12, 2013, to widespread critical acclaim. It grossed over $16 million worldwide and received numerous awards and nominations, including the Independent Spirit Award for Best First Feature and the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Motion Picture.

Menace II Society (1993)

Menace II Society
★★★★
★★★★
3 out of 4 stars

From Directors: Albert Hughes, Allen Hughes, starring Tyrin Turner, Larenz Tate, June Kyoto Lu, Toshi Toda
Rated R

Menace II Society is a 1993 American crime drama film directed by the Hughes brothers and starring Tyrin Turner, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Samuel L. Jackson. The film follows Caine Lawson, an 18-year-old African American living in the Crenshaw neighborhood of Los Angeles, and his close friends, who often find themselves in violent situations. Through the course of the film, Caine must decide whether to continue the criminal life he has come to know or to break away from it and attempt to live a better life. The film explores themes of violence, peer pressure, family, and coming of age in an inner-city environment. Menace II Society received critical acclaim at the time of its release, and is now widely regarded as a cult classic.

Selma (2014)

Selma
★★★★
★★★★
3 out of 4 stars

From Ava DuVernay, starring David Oyelowo, Carmen Ejogo, Oprah Winfrey, Tom Wilkinson
Rated PG-13

Selma is a biographical drama set in 1965 during the civil rights movement in the United States. The film follows the efforts of civil rights leader and Nobel Prize winner Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., as he and his followers attempt a march to the state capitol in Montgomery, Alabama, in support of voting rights for African Americans. Despite the violent opposition they face, they ultimately succeed in their mission. In the process, they help to change the course of history forever. The film stars David Oyelowo as King, Carmen Ejogo as Coretta Scott King, and Tom Wilkinson as President Lyndon B. Johnson. The film was directed by Ava DuVernay and was nominated for two Academy Awards.

If Beale Street Could Talk (2018)

If Beale Street Could Talk
★★★★
★★★★
2.8 out of 4 stars

From Barry Jenkins, starring KiKi Layne, Stephan James, Regina King, Teyonah Parris
Rated R

 



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