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Great Historical Black Movies Based On True Stories

Updated March 2, 2021 4.7k votes 1.0k voters 89.4k views91 items

List RulesVote up your favorite Black movies that are based on true stories.

Historical movies about famous Black people often focus on stories of bravery in the face of oppression. The top historical Black movies are based on civil rights leaders, sports stars, and legendary musicians. This is a list of true Black movies featuring everything from Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom to 12 Years a Slave to Malcolm X.

What movies will you find on this list of the best historical Black films? History buffs might place Glory near the top. Based on the Civil War experiences of one of the first military units of the Union Army to be comprised entirely of African-American men, this great film went on to win three Academy Awards, including a Best Supporting Actor trophy for Denzel Washington. Ali, starring Will Smith, is another good Black movie based on true events. Selma took an in-depth look at Martin Luther King's iconic march from Selma to Montgomery to fight for equal voting rights for African Americans. Other good movies featured on this best historical Black films list include biography films like The Hurricane and The Last King of Scotland, not to mention a great deal of top African American biopics.

Do you have a favorite historical Black movie? Give the best films a vote up and please down any that you think other fans can skip. When you're done, be sure to check out our list of movies about discrimination.

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  • 12 Years a Slave2
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  • Malcolm X4
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    Denzel Washington, Al Sharpton

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  • Glory7
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    Morgan Freeman, Denzel Washington

    Released1989

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    Morgan Freeman, Matthew McConaughey

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    Will Smith, Jamie Foxx

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    Idris Elba, Naomie Harris

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  • Django Unchained15
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    Leonardo DiCaprio, Kerry Washington

    Released2012

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  • Fences16
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    Denzel Washington, Viola Davis

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    Directed byDenzel Washington

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    The Great Debaters

    Denzel Washington, Forest Whitaker

    Released2007

    Directed byDenzel Washington

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  • Rosewood18
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    Jon Voight, Don Cheadle

    Released1997

    Directed byJohn Singleton

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  • Invictus19
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    Invictus

    Morgan Freeman, Matt Damon

    Released2009

    Directed byClint Eastwood

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  • Cool Runnings20
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    Cool Runnings

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  • The Hurricane21
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    Released1999

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  • Ghosts of Mississippi22
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    Whoopi Goldberg, Sissy Spacek

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    Joel Edgerton, Ruth Negga

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