A wonderful short video essay (3:25 minutes), about the genre that is both loved and highly criticized; known as Blaxploitation. Sit back and learn about the struggle and discrimination that Afro-American filmmakers had to deal with. This genre also had a lot of creative inspiration in it too and employed a network of Afro-American creatives. The main problem was the portrayals. If the genre came back in force, the portrayals would have to be more HEROES.
Blaxploitation is the genre that gave the world kickass black heroes (like Richard Roundtree, Pam Grier, Fred Willamson and Melvin Van Peebles), amazing funk soundtracks (including James Brown, Marvin Gaye and Earth, Wind and Fire), and a stylish vision of action cinema. Here’s an introduction to these famous black films, with all their problematic and progressive content, the social and political context at the time, and how it ties into later films like Boyz n the Hood.