vote on everything
Watchworthy
4.2k voters

The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s

Updated October 5, 2020 27.1k votes 4.2k voters 298.6k views95 items

List RulesVote up your favorite African American films that were released in the 1990s.

This list of the best '90s Black movies contains many of the best films about the African American experience of any decade. Thanks to filmmakers like Spike Lee and John Singleton, 1990s Black movies tackled serious issues without sacrificing entertainment value. Not all '90s African American movies were hard-hitting dramas like Malcolm X, however; plenty of '90s Black movies are comedies like Friday or straight-up actioners like Bad Boys.

What are some of the top '90s Black films? Boyz n the Hood is an obvious example of an African American film from the decade. Starring such talented actors as Cuba Gooding Jr., Ice Cube, and Morris Chestnut, the film tells the story of young men growing up in urban South Central Los Angeles and it marked a major cultural moment for Black cinema.

Denzel Washington appears on this '90s Black movie list several times, more than once for playing real life figures in films like The Hurricane and, of course, Spike Lee's epic film biography of Malcolm X. Speaking of popular Spike Lee movies, Washington also starred in the director's He Got Game.

The order of this list of the classic Black 90s movies is set by your votes, so vote up your favorite Black movies that came out in the 90s to change the rankings.

...more
  • 1
    Boyz n the Hood is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    1,299
    155

    ActorsIce Cube, Angela Bassett, Cuba Gooding Jr., Laurence Fishburne, Nia Long

    Directed byJohn Singleton

    amazon buy button

    More Boyz n the Hood 

    #8 of 121 The Greatest Directorial Debuts Of All Time#125 of 675 The Best Movies Roger Ebert Gave Four Stars

  • 2
    Friday is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    1,538
    198

    Friday

    1995

    ActorsIce Cube, Meagan Good, Nia Long, Bernie Mac, Chris Tucker

    Directed byF. Gary Gray

    amazon buy button

    More Friday 

    #364 of 1,647 The Most Rewatchable Movies#61 of 97 The Best Movies to Watch on Mushrooms

  • 3
    Poetic Justice is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    1,326
    167

    ActorsJanet Jackson, Keanu Reeves, Tupac Shakur, Maya Angelou, Billy Zane

    Directed byJohn Singleton

    amazon buy button

    More Poetic Justice 

    15 Things You Didn’t Know About The Film ‘Poetic Justice’#9 of 47 The 25+ Best Movies for Black Women

  • 4
    Menace II Society is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s

    ActorsSamuel L. Jackson, Jada Pinkett Smith, Charles S. Dutton, Khandi Alexander, Bill Duke

    Directed byAlbert Hughes, Allen Hughes

    amazon buy button
  • 5
    Juice is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    1,009
    119

    Juice

    1992

    ActorsTupac Shakur, Samuel L. Jackson, Queen Latifah, Omar Epps, Donald Faison

    Directed byErnest R. Dickerson

    amazon buy button

    More Juice 

    #624 of 863 The Best Albums of the 1990s#3 of 36 30+ Great Movies About Urban Teens

  • 6
    Set It Off is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    977
    122

    ActorsQueen Latifah, Dr. Dre, Jada Pinkett Smith, Vivica A. Fox, Blair Underwood

    Directed byF. Gary Gray

    amazon buy button
  • 7
    The Wood is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    919
    111

    ActorsChristina Milian, Sanaa Lathan, Taye Diggs, Omar Epps, Tamala Jones

    Directed byRick Famuyiwa

    amazon buy button
  • 8
    House Party is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    696
    97

    ActorsMartin Lawrence, George Clinton, Paul O'Grady, Tisha Campbell-Martin, Clifton Powell

    Directed byReginald Hudlin

    amazon buy button

    More House Party 

    #551 of 1,137 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time#113 of 252 The Funniest '90s Movies

  • 9
    The Best Man is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    642
    92

    ActorsNia Long, Terrence Howard, Sanaa Lathan, Taye Diggs, Regina Hall

    Directed byMalcolm D. Lee

    amazon buy button
  • 10
    Bad Boys is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    648
    94

    ActorsWill Smith, Téa Leoni, Martin Lawrence, Marg Helgenberger, Joe Pantoliano

    Directed byMichael Bay

    amazon buy button

    More Bad Boys 

    #90 of 280 The Best Whodunit Movies#335 of 922 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films

  • 11
    What's Love Got to Do with It is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s

    ActorsAngela Bassett, Laurence Fishburne, Khandi Alexander, Chi McBride, Jenifer Lewis

    Directed byBrian Gibson

    amazon buy button

    More What's Love Got to Do with It 

    #38 of 195 The Best Movies About Music#10 of 55 The Best Biopics About Women

  • 12
    New Jack City is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    474
    53

    ActorsChris Rock, Ice-T, Judd Nelson, Wesley Snipes, Flavor Flav

    Directed byMario Van Peebles

    amazon buy button

    More New Jack City 

    #53 of 204 The Best Drug Movies of All Time#334 of 481 The Greatest Movies For Guys

  • 13
    Life is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    527
    71

    Life

    1999

    ActorsEddie Murphy, Poppy Montgomery, Martin Lawrence, Bernie Mac, Sanaa Lathan

    Directed byTed Demme

    amazon buy button
  • 14
    Waiting to Exhale is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s

    ActorsWhitney Houston, Angela Bassett, Kelly Preston, Wesley Snipes, Kenya Moore

    Directed byForest Whitaker

    amazon buy button

    More Waiting to Exhale 

    #293 of 836 The Greatest Chick Flicks Ever Made#346 of 373 The Best Musical Movies Of All Time

  • 15
    Malcolm X is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    514
    69

    ActorsDenzel Washington, Al Sharpton, Nelson Mandela, Angela Bassett, Christopher Plummer

    Directed bySpike Lee

    amazon buy button

    More Malcolm X 

    #273 of 366 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime#4 of 42 Great Historical Black Movies Based On True Stories

  • 16
    Love Jones is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    478
    61

    ActorsNia Long, Isaiah Washington, Lisa Nicole Carson, Larenz Tate, Bill Bellamy

    Directed byTheodore Witcher

    amazon buy button
  • 17
    Soul Food is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    569
    97

    ActorsVivica A. Fox, Nia Long, Vanessa L. Williams, Babyface, Malik Yoba

    Directed byGeorge Tillman, Jr.

    amazon buy button
  • 18
    Boomerang is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    433
    59

    ActorsHalle Berry, Eddie Murphy, Chris Rock, Martin Lawrence, Grace Jones

    Directed byReginald Hudlin

    amazon buy button
  • 19
    A Thin Line Between Love and H is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s

    ActorsMartin Lawrence, Tracy Morgan, Bobby Brown, Regina King, Della Reese

    Directed byMartin Lawrence

    amazon buy button
  • 20
    Above the Rim is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    444
    63

    ActorsTupac Shakur, Bernie Mac, Marlon Wayans, Wood Harris, Henry Simmons

    Directed byJeff Pollack

    amazon buy button

    More Above the Rim 

    #276 of 316 Movies with the Best Soundtracks#6 of 33 The 30+ Best Black Sports Movies Ever Made

  • 21
    Jason's Lyric is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    388
    54

    ActorsJada Pinkett Smith, Forest Whitaker, Eddie Griffin, Lisa Nicole Carson, Treach

    Directed byDoug McHenry

    amazon buy button

    More Jason's Lyric 

    #8 of 55 The Best Black Romance Movies, Ranked#63 of 629 The Best Black Movies Ever Made, Ranked

  • 22
    Higher Learning is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s

    ActorsGwyneth Paltrow, Jennifer Connelly, Tyra Banks, Ice Cube, Busta Rhymes

    Directed byJohn Singleton

    amazon buy button
  • 23
    Crooklyn is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s
    428
    77

    ActorsRuPaul, Spike Lee, Alfre Woodard, Isaiah Washington, Delroy Lindo

    Directed bySpike Lee

    amazon buy button
  • 24
    A Low Down Dirty Shame is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s

    ActorsJada Pinkett Smith, Salli Richardson, Charles S. Dutton, Keenen Ivory Wayans, Robert Schimmel

    Directed byKeenen Ivory Wayans

    amazon buy button

    More A Low Down Dirty Shame 

    #190 of 233 The Best R-Rated Action Movies of All Time, Ranked#16 of 57 The Best Black Action Movies, Ranked

  • 25
    Don't Be a Menace to South Cen is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Black Movies Of The 1990s

    ActorsVivica A. Fox, Bernie Mac, Damon Wayans, Marlon Wayans, Shawn Wayans

    Directed byParis Barclay

    amazon buy button
FilmsFilmEntertainmenttop 5090s Movies