In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, here are top movies which feature civil rights themes.
10. THE HELP
QUALITY: * * * * ACCEPTABILITY: -2
THE HELP is a period drama set in the 1960s era of civil rights struggles, with a focus on black maids in Jackson, Mississippi who begin speaking out against the bad treatment they receive from their white female employers. THE HELP is well done with some positive Christian content, but it also has some Romantic, feminist content attacking tradition and containing foul language.
9. ONCE UPON A TIME WHEN WE WERE COLORED
QUALITY: * * * ACCEPTABILITY: +2
ONCE UPON A TIME…WHEN WE WERE COLORED, based upon the critically acclaimed book chronicles the early life of its author Clifton Taulbert. Clifton is encouraged by the Christian faith, love and kinship of his tightly knit “colored” community to overcome the racial intolerance prevalent in the deep South of the 1950s and 60′s. The movie contains only moderately questionable elements while promoting Christianity, family loyalty, personal responsibility, and a biblical worldview.
8. LILIES OF THE FIELD
LILIES OF THE FIELD stars Sidney Poitier as an itinerant worker who comes across a group of East Germany nuns who have faced many hardship to emigrate to America. They believe he has been sent to them by God in order to build them a new chapel.
7. DRIVING MISS DAISY
QUALITY: * * * * ACCEPTABILITY: +2
A warm movie about an embittered, elderly Jewish lady, who has known poverty and prejudice, but who finds reconciliation, hope and love through the Christian kindness, mercy and humility of her elderly black chauffeur.
QUALITY: * * * * ACCEPTABILITY: -2
AMISTAD is a moving and uplifting story of men battling to win their freedom. It tells the true story of Africans who in 1839 revolt against the masters of a Spanish slave ship but are imprisoned by the U.S. Navy. Aside from violence and naturalistic nudity, director Steven Spielberg has treated this morality tale with his usual flair. The movie has a powerful reference to the life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ, although there is also a reference to ancestor worship.
QUALITY: * * * * ACCEPTABILITY: -1
With a really good 1860s look, GLORY is a biblical moral lesson about overcoming racism through reconciliation, not rebellion or revenge, set in the context of history.
4. THE JACKIE ROBINSON STORY
THE JACKIE ROBINSON STORY is from 1950 and stars the Robinson as himself in his struggle to become the first African American Major League Baseball player
3. REMEMBER THE TITANS
QUALITY: * * * * ACCEPTABILITY: +3
Based on a true story, REMEMBER THE TITANS depicts the forced integration of an all black high school with an all white school and its impact on football in 1971 Alexandria, Virginia. Faced with the need to unify their team, two coaches, one of them played by Denzel Washington, must help the team to learn that the real victory lies in changed hearts. Humorous as well as dramatic, TITANS is a moral, uplifting, well-acted tale.
2. AMAZING GRACE
QUALITY: * * * * ACCEPTABILITY +4
EPIPHANY AWARD WINNER
AMAZING GRACE is the story of William Wilberforce who, after a young life of debauchery, came to Christ at the age of 25 and believed he was called by God to stop the slave trade and reform morals in England in the 18th Century. The acting, directing and production values in AMAZING GRACE are superb. It also has deep, soul-stirring Christian references to the sinfulness of people, the salvation of Jesus Christ, and the divinity of Jesus Christ, with frequent renditions of the great hymn “Amazing Grace.”
1. TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD
QUALITY: * * * * ACCEPTABILITY +3
Based on Harper Lee’s best selling novel, TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD takes place in Macon, Georgia during the Depression. Gregory Peck, as Atticus Finch, a trial attorney and widower raising his two children, is asked to defend a black man accused of the rape of a white woman.