Black folks love a good movie and over the years, we’ve had plenty that deal with all kind of Black families – from the slightly dysfunctional to the all-out crazy. (Or as Kanye would say, cray-cray.) In honor of Black History Month and with the Oscars on tap this weekend (Good luck Denzel!) we had to take another look at some of our favorite black family movies. What unites them? Strong mothers, competitive siblings, challenging relationships, family camaraderie and always humor, even through the roughest times. Here’s our list of the black movies that made us laugh…and cry.
JOHNSON FAMILY VACATION (2004)
Let’s just start with Vanessa Williams married to Cedric The Entertainer. Sounds like a stretch to us, but we let it go and enjoyed this silly comedy based on an ill-fated trip across country for one Black family. The kids were played by Solange Knowles and Bow Wow, so you knew what it was, but it had its hilarious moments.
THIS CHRISTMAS (2007)
Idris Elba, Columbus Short and Chris Brown provide very worthwhile eye candy in this film about a troubled but loving family coming together for the holidays. Loretta Devine plays the family matriarch.
THE ANTWONE FISHER STORY (2002)
Denzel Washington starred in and directed this film based on the true story of Navy man Antwone Fisher and his struggle to find and reconnect with himself and his family. Derek Luke plays Fisher, Joy Bailey is his compassionate girlfriend and Washington the Navy therapist who assists Fisher in his journey.
DOWN IN THE DELTA (1998)
Directed by Maya Angelou, “Down in the Delta” features a mother struggling with addiction who moves to Mississippi with her children only to find the Southern life confining at first. But soon the love of family helps her heal her own demons and she finds peace after years of turmoil. Alfre Woodwarad stars with Esther Rolle, Al Freeman, Jr. Loretta Devine and Wesley Snipes.
MADEA’S FAMILY REUNION (2006)
Tyler Perry’s adaptation of his own stage play starred his alter ego Ma’dea along with Lynn Whitfield, Boris Kodjoe, Blair Underwood and Keke Palmer. The story includes a troubled teenager and an equally troubled relationship but ends with a note of hope and a message about the lasting importance of family.
THE NUTTY PROFESSOR (1996)
What funnier family has ever been created than the Klumps – all played by Eddie Murphy. In the first of two movies, Murphy is Sherman Klump, an overweight professor looking for love who takes a chemical that transforms him into a slimmer but nastier alter ego. Jada Pinkett stars as the object of Klump’s desire, though she has to get by his large, in every sense of the word, family first.
WELCOME HOME ROSCOE JENKINS (2008)
Martin Lawrence and Joy Bailey play a high-end L.A. celebrity couple that return home to Martin’s humble beginnings in the South. Cedric The Entertainer, Mike Epps and Mo’Nique play the kind of family members you hope to avoid at family gatherings; James Earl Jones and “The Color Purple’s” Margaret Avery are the parents of this crazy clan.
MAMA FLORA’S FAMILY -TV MOVIE- (1998)
Although it was a TV movie, “Mama Flora’s Family” is the memorable story of the triumphs and struggles of a black family set against the backdrop of several decades of American history that resonated with audiences. Cicely Tyson, Blair Underwood, Queen Latifah and Mario Van Peebles star as multiple generations of one family.
ARE WE THERE YET? (2005)
Bachelor Nick soon finds out that to win the heart of Suzanne, he must first win over her kids and it’s not an easy task. When Nick offers to drive the kids cross-country to see their mom during a holiday, predictable disaster and comedy are on the menu. Ice Cube and Nia Long star.
SOUL FOOD (1997)
This popular drama is about three Chicago sisters and their families who carry on their mother’s tradition of Sunday soul food dinners even after she dies. The movie inspired the long-running Showtime TV series of the same name, one of the only successful Black family dramas ever aired on television. Vanessa L. Williams, Vivica A. Fox, Nia Long and Mekhi Phifer star.
Also On Black America Web:
This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
1 of 31
2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
2 of 31
3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
3 of 31
4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
4 of 31
5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
5 of 31
6 of 31
7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
7 of 31
8 of 31
9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
9 of 31
10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
10 of 31
11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
11 of 31
12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
12 of 31
13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
13 of 31
14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
14 of 31
15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
15 of 31
16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
16 of 31
17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
17 of 31
18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
18 of 31
19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
19 of 31
20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
20 of 31
21. Bae #retailtherapy
21 of 31
22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
22 of 31
23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
23 of 31
24. Diggy Simmons
24 of 31
25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
25 of 31
26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
26 of 31
27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
27 of 31
28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
28 of 31
29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
29 of 31
30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
30 of 31
31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
31 of 31