Have you been wondering what Junteenth is?
Wikipedia sums it up nicely:
Juneteenth is an unofficial American holiday and an official Texas state holiday, celebrated annually on the 19th of June in the United States to commemorate Union army general Gordon Granger apprising federal orders in the city of Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865, proclaiming all slaves in Texas were now free.
To celebrate Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day and Jubilee Day, I pulled together a list of films you can watch to learn more about the history of racial injustice in our country.
Juneteenth may only be a one day holiday but we can continue our journey to become better allies, friends, and supporters to the Black community all year long.
Here are 6 movies you can watch to embrace the cel-liberation!
(*Movie Synopsis credit: Wikipedia)
- Just Mercy – After graduating from Harvard, Bryan Stevenson heads to Alabama to defend those wrongly condemned or those not afforded proper representation. One of his first cases is that of Walter McMillian, who is sentenced to die in 1987 for the murder of an 18-year-old girl, despite evidence proving his innocence. Watch on: Apple Itunes(Currently Free)
- 13th – Filmmaker Ava DuVernay explores the history of racial inequality in the United States, focusing on the fact that the nation’s prisons are disproportionately filled with African-Americans. Watch on: Youtube (Currently Free)
- Harriet – From her escape from slavery through the dangerous missions she led to liberate hundreds of slaves through the Underground Railroad, the story of heroic abolitionist Harriet Tubman is told. Watch on: Apple Itunes ($5.99 Rental)
- Selma – Although the Civil Rights Act of 1964 legally desegregated the South, discrimination was still rampant in certain areas, making it very difficult for blacks to register to vote. In 1965, an Alabama city became the battleground in the fight for suffrage. Despite violent opposition, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (David Oyelowo) and his followers pressed forward on an epic march from Selma to Montgomery, and their efforts culminated in President Lyndon Johnson signing the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Watch on: Apple Itunes (Currently Free)
- The Hate You Give – Starr Carter is constantly switching between two worlds — the poor, mostly black neighborhood where she lives and the wealthy, mostly white prep school that she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is soon shattered when she witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend at the hands of a police officer. Facing pressure from all sides of the community, Starr must find her voice and decide to stand up for what’s right. Watch on: Apple Itunes (Currently Free)
- The Secret Life of Bees – Haunted by memories of her late mother and abused by her father (Paul Bettany), 14-year-old Lily Owens (Dakota Fanning) runs away with her friend and caregiver Rosaleen (Jennifer Hudson) to the South Carolina town that holds the key to her mother’s past. There, Lily meets the Boatwright sisters (Queen Latifah, Alicia Keys, Sophie Okonedo), who take her in and teach her about beekeeping, honey, and the Black Madonna. Lily also discovers that the truth about her mother is closer than she thinks. Watch on: Apple Itunes (Currently Free)