Smithsonian Film Festival Examines African-American Life Through Dozens of Distinct Lenses | At the Smithsonian

In the face of renewed nativist political sentiment and the reemergence of bald-faced white supremacy on a national scale, American moviegoers of 2018 have been more receptive than ever to films tackling the knotty themes of the African-American experience and racially motivated injustice. Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman uncomfortably linked the America of the early 1970s to the America of today; Boots Riley’s Sorry to Bother You threw a surreal spotlight on the dissonances of contemporary black identity; Carlos López Estrada’s Blindspotting inspected the notion of Oakland authenticity both black and white; and Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther used a comic book allegory to probe the complex relationship of African-Americans to Africa.

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