From June 10, subscribers that land on the Netflix home screen will be greeted with a specially curated selection of Black Lives Matter content. Here’s what Netflix has to say about the movement, as well as which films, series, and documentaries to watch first.
Across the US and beyond, activists continue to protest over the death of George Floyd, as well as other instances of institutionalized racial violence.
In response to the Black Lives Matter movement, many brands are announcing how they plan to champion people of color. Netflix is no exception.
Here’s their official statement, released via Twitter…
When we say “Black Lives Matter,” we also mean “Black storytelling matters.”
With an understanding that our commitment to true, systemic change will take time – we’re starting by highlighting powerful and complex narratives about the Black experience.
— Netflix (@netflix) June 10, 2020
When you log onto Netflix today, you will see a carefully curated list of titles that only begin to tell the complex and layered stories about racial injustice and Blackness in America. https://t.co/dN6XQmsrGK pic.twitter.com/3CIrrno6mw
— Netflix (@netflix) June 10, 2020
Although only time will tell if Netflix follows through with its promise to amplify black storytelling, this is a positive first step from the platform. Of course, it would have been better if Netflix had done this all along…
The new Black Lives Matter category features 47 titles that explore race in America. As well as educational documentaries, the category includes comedy, romances, and titles about musicians and athletes of color. This diverse range of content provides a detailed look at the rich narrative of blackness.
Here are just a handful of titles included in the category that we’d recommend watching first.
13th N (2016)
This hard-hitting documentary is the work of Ava DuVernay (Selma, A Wrinkle In time, When they See Us). The title comes from the 13th amendment, which abolished slavery except for the use of involuntary servitude as the punishment of a crime.
You actually don’t need a Netflix account to watch this one. To educate around Black Lives Matter, Netflix has uploaded the documentary to YouTube for anyone to watch free of charge.
Dear White People N (Seasons 1-2)
This witty dramedy follows students of color as they negotiate an Ivy League college that’s not as “post-racial” as it likes to think it is. Whether or not the show will be renewed for a fourth season remains a little unclear.
When They See Us N (2019)
When They See Us tells the tragic true story of five black teenagers falsely accused of attacking a female jogger in Central Park. The series received magnificent critical acclaim and was nominated for 11 Primetime Emmys.
There’s also a special follow up episode, Oprah Winfrey Presents When They See Us Now. In it, Oprah discusses the series with the cast, creators, and the five men who faced the nightmarish ordeal.
Pose (Season 1 & 2) N
Ryan Murphy’s Pose follows a cast of African-American and Latino LGBTQ characters through the ballroom culture scene in 1980s New York. As well as incredible ball performances (drag, dancing, lip-syncing, and modelling) expect to see these diverse characters supporting each other through terrible hardships and great highs.
What Happened, Miss Simone? N (2015)
Runtime: 1hr 45min
What Happened, Miss Simone? is one of many amazing music documentaries in Netflix’s Black Lives Matter category. The movie follows the career of iconic singer, Nina Simone, intertwining with her involvement in the civil rights movement. Nina Simone’s daughter, Lisa Simone Kelly, served as the executive producer on this one.
Who Killed Malcolm X? N (2020)
This true-crime docuseries explores the murder of civil rights activist, Malcolm X. It follows a Washington tour guide who has spent the last 30 years investigating what actually happened on that fateful day in 1965.
Self-Made: Inspired By The Life Of Madam C. J. Walker N (2020)
This historical drama series is inspired by the life of C. J. Walker, a pioneer of black haircare products at the turn of the century. Although elements of the series are fictionalized, Madam Walker really did triumph over prejudice to become one of the first female self-made female millionaires.