Entertainment
4.9k voters

Well-Made Movies About Slavery

Updated December 7, 2020 10.2k votes 4.9k voters 763.7k views54 items

List RulesFeature films that portray slavery as a main theme

A list of slave movies, ranked by their quality and storytelling. These are the top movies that deal with the issue of slaves, the slave trade, and slavery in general. What are the best slavery movies of all time? If you believe we left something off of this list,  please feel free to add it yourself. Slavery is among the most despicable institutions of any society that supports it. The United States came close to permanently splitting in two because of slavery. It's a delicate subject that deserves attention, so we can learn from history and never fall into it again. These movies handle slavery with aplomb (sometimes metaphorically) and are definitely worth watching.
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  • Roots1
    1,086
    306

    Roots

    Louis Gossett Jr., LeVar Burton

    Released1977

    Directed byKevin Hooks

     

     

     

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  • 12 Years a Slave2
    913
    167

    12 Years a Slave

    Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender

    Released2013

    Directed bySteve McQueen

    12 Years a Slave is a 2013 period drama film directed by Steve McQueen, based on the 1853...  more
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  • Amistad3
    572
    159

    Amistad

    Morgan Freeman, Matthew McConaughey

    Released1997

    Directed bySteven Spielberg

    Amistad is a 1997 historical drama film directed by Steven Spielberg, based on the true story...  more
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  • Glory4
    455
    128

    Glory

    Morgan Freeman, Denzel Washington

    Released1989

    Directed byEdward Zwick

    Glory is a 1989 American drama film directed by Edward Zwick and starring Matthew Broderick,...  more
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  • Django Unchained5
    695
    217

    Django Unchained

    Leonardo DiCaprio, Kerry Washington

    Released2012

    Directed byQuentin Tarantino

    Django Unchained is a 2012 American revisionist Western film directed by Quentin Tarantino....  more
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  • Gladiator6
    249
    141

    Gladiator

    Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix

    Released2000

    Directed byRidley Scott

    Gladiator is a 2000 American-British epic historical drama film directed by Ridley Scott,...  more
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  • Braveheart7
    195
    118

    Braveheart

    Mel Gibson, Sophie Marceau

    Released1995

    Directed byMel Gibson

    Braveheart is a 1995 epic historical medieval war drama film directed by and starring Mel...  more
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  • Gone with the Wind8
    234
    151

    Gone with the Wind

    Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh

    Released1939

    Directed bySam Wood, George Cukor, Victor Fleming

    Gone with the Wind is a 1939 American epic historical romance film adapted from Margaret...  more
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  • The Ten Commandments9
    138
    81

    The Ten Commandments

    Charlton Heston, Vincent Price

    Released1956

    Directed byCecil B. DeMille

    The Ten Commandments is a 1956 American religious epic film produced and directed by Cecil B....  more
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  • Spartacus10
    186
    131

    Spartacus

    Kirk Douglas, Laurence Olivier

    Released1960

    Directed byStanley Kubrick

    Spartacus is a 1960 American epic historical drama film directed by Stanley Kubrick. The...  more
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  • Rosewood11
    313
    92

    Rosewood

    Jon Voight, Don Cheadle

    Released1997

    Directed byJohn Singleton

    Rosewood is a 1997 film directed by John Singleton. While based on historic events of the 1923...  more
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  • Harriet12
    154
    28

    Harriet

    Cynthia Erivo, Leslie Odom Jr.

    Released2019

    Directed byKasi Lemmons

    Harriet is a 2019 American biographical film directed by Kasi Lemmons, based on the life of...  more
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  • The Birth of a Nation13
    150
    34

    The Birth of a Nation

    Nate Parker, Armie Hammer

    Released2016

    Directed byNate Parker

    The Birth of a Nation is a 2016 American period drama film based on the story of Nat Turner,...  more
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  • Uncle Tom's Cabin14
    183
    74

    Uncle Tom's Cabin

    Virginia Grey, Margarita Fischer

    Released1927

    Directed byHarry A. Pollard

    Uncle Tom's Cabin is a silent film directed by Harry A. Pollard and released by Universal...  more
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  • Mandingo15
    217
    100

    Mandingo

    Sylvester Stallone, Ken Norton

    Released1975

    Directed byRichard Fleischer

    Mandingo is an American motion picture released by Paramount Pictures in 1975. It is based on...  more
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  • Queen: The Story of an American Family16
    Queen: The Story of an American Family is a 1993 partly factual historical novel by Alex Haley...  more
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  • Amazing Grace17
    101
    43

    Amazing Grace

    Benedict Cumberbatch, Michael Gambon

    Released2006

    Directed byMichael Apted

    Amazing Grace is a 2006 American-British biographical drama film directed by Michael Apted,...  more
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  • The Prince of Egypt18
    75
    22

    The Prince of Egypt

    Sandra Bullock, Michelle Pfeiffer

    Released1998

    Directed byBrenda Chapman, Simon Wells, Steve Hickner

    The Prince of Egypt is a 1998 American animated epic musical biblical film and the first...  more
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  • I Am Slave19
    102
    46

    I Am Slave

    Lubna Azabal, Nonso Anozie

    Released2010

    Directed byGabriel Range

    I Am Slave is a 2010 television film produced for Channel 4 on the story of one woman's fight...  more
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  • Free State of Jones20
    78
    30

    Free State of Jones

    Matthew McConaughey, Gugu Mbatha-Raw

    Released2016

    Directed byGary Ross

    Free State of Jones is a 2016 American film inspired by the life of Newton Knight and his...  more
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  • Memoirs of a Geisha21
    111
    65

    Memoirs of a Geisha

    Zhang Ziyi, Michelle Yeoh

    Released2005

    Directed byRob Marshall

    Released: 2005
    Memoirs of a Geisha is a 2005 American epic film adaptation of the novel of the same name,...  more
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  • Huckleberry Finn22
    103
    67

    Huckleberry Finn

    Harvey Korman, Paul Winfield

    Released1974

    Directed byJ. Lee Thompson

    Huckleberry Finn is the 1974 musical film version of Mark Twain's American classic, The...  more
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  • Lincoln23
    78
    44

    Lincoln

    Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Daniel Day-Lewis

    Released2012

    Directed bySteven Spielberg

    Lincoln is a 2012 American epic historical drama film directed by Steven Spielberg, starring...  more
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  • Sally Hemings: An American Scandal24
    75
    43

    Sally Hemings: An American Scandal

    Sam Neill, Diahann Carroll

    Released2000

    Directed byCharles Haid

    Sally Hemings: An American Scandal is a 2000 film written by Tina Andrews and directed by...  more
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  • Beloved25
    2
    0

    Beloved

    Oprah Winfrey, Thandie Newton

    Released1998

    Directed byJonathan Demme

    Beloved is a 1998 American horror-drama film based on Toni Morrison's 1987 novel of the same...  more
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