African History Month Films: Black Music Biographies
SCREENINGS TUESDAYS AT 5 PM. FREE ADMISSION
Three African American directors—Don Cheadle, Dee Rees, and Darnell Martin—take on crucial motion picture biographies of legendary Black performers.
7 February - Miles Ahead
Don Cheadle, USA, 2015, 101 minutes. Written, starring, and directed by Don Cheadle, this surprisingly fresh and funny drama is about an imaginary incident during jazz great Miles Davis’s five-year ‘retirement’, and sports an appearance by Ewan MacGregor as an intrusive music reporter.
21 February - Cadillac Records
Darnell Martin, USA, 2008, 109 minutes. Etta James. Chuck Berry. Howlin’ Wolf. Bo Diddley. Muddy Waters. Sonny Boy Williamson. They all recorded with Chess Records in Chicago in the ’40s, ’50s and ’60s and this is their story, a tale that changed music forever.
28 February – Bessie
Dee Rees, USA, 2015, 132 minutes. With Queen Latifah in the title role as Bessie Smith and Mo’Nique as Ma Rainey, this rich costume drama bio-pic looks at the early days of the Blues. Directed by the filmmaker who helmed the breakout indie hit Pariah, Dee Rees.
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