Science fiction has been a popular genre in film for decades, with countless classic movies that have thrilled audiences around the world. However, within the sci-fi genre, there is a subset of films that explores the experiences of black characters in futuristic and otherworldly settings. These movies provide a unique perspective on science fiction, delving into themes of race, identity, and social justice. Here are some of our favorite black sci-fi based films that you shouldn’t miss.
The Brother from Another Planet (1984)
Directed by John Sayles, this film tells the story of an alien from another planet who crash-lands in New York City. He appears to be a black man and doesn’t speak, but has extraordinary abilities. The Brother from Another Planet explores themes of race, identity, and assimilation, as the alien navigates life on earth and experiences the racial prejudices of the time.
Men in Black (1997)
Directed by Barry Sonnenfeld, Men in Black is a comedic sci-fi classic that stars Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones. The film follows a secret government agency tasked with monitoring extraterrestrial life on Earth. Will Smith’s character, Agent J, is a new recruit who must learn the ropes from his partner, Agent K, played by Tommy Lee Jones. Men in Black is a fun and entertaining movie that doesn’t take itself too seriously, but still manages to tackle serious themes like immigration and racial stereotypes.
Space is the Place (1974)
Space is the Place is a unique sci-fi film that explores the themes of race and identity in a surreal setting. The film stars jazz musician Sun Ra as himself, a cosmic being who comes to Earth to offer salvation to black people through the creation of a new planet. The film features an eclectic mix of music, dance, and avant-garde visuals that make it a one-of-a-kind viewing experience.
Attack the Block (2011)
Directed by Joe Cornish, ATTACK THE BLOCK is a thrilling sci-fi action movie that takes place in a London housing estate. The film follows a gang of young delinquents who are forced to defend their neighborhood against an alien invasion. ATTACK THE BLOCK is a fun and fast-paced movie that features a diverse cast of characters and tackles issues like poverty, racism, and social inequality.
Son of Ingagi (1940)
Directed by Richard C. Kahn, Son of Ingagi is a pioneering black sci-fi film that features an all-black cast. The movie tells the story of a doctor who creates a serum that can bring the dead back to life. When her husband is killed in a hit-and-run accident, she uses the serum to bring him back, but he comes back as a violent monster. Son of Ingagi is a fascinating example of early black sci-fi, and it’s an important piece of film history.
In conclusion, these five films provide unique perspectives on science fiction that are often overlooked. They explore issues of race, identity, and social justice in exciting and imaginative ways. If you’re a sci-fi fan, these movies are a must-see, and even if you’re not, they offer a fresh take on the genre that is sure to entertain and inspire.
Each month we curate and present subjects and topics that matter to you. We work with Content Publishers in each of the major areas that impact our readers. Find out more about how you as a content publisher can benefit and grow your audience with curated content.
From Lifestyle to Entertainment to Business and Politics, the Narrative Matters showcases the content from the top minds and authors in their genre.
Featured image: Jakob Owens