Beginning Friday, February 6, 2009, Lifetime Television will be commemorating Black History Month as only Lifetime could. They will be presenting a number of movies featuring African-American performers. As can be expected from this channel that caters to women, the movies will star African-American actresses, many of whom are award winning.
The celebration kicks off on Friday with “The Rosa Parks Story,” starring Academy Award nominated actresses Angela Bassett and Cicely Tyson. Although there were other bus boycotts, Rosa Parks’ refusal to move to the back of the bus helped fast forward the Civil Rights Movement. Bassett’s strong performance as the Civil Rights icon earned an Emmy nomination. Of all the movies presented during this month, “The Rosa Parks Story” should not be missed.
Another must see movie presentation is “What’s Love Got to Do with It,” again starring Angela Bassett. This biopic recounts the life of singer Tina Turner from her humble beginnings to her escape from her abusive husband, Ike Turner (Laurence Fishburne). There strong performance garnered Academy Award nominations for best actor and actress. Tina Turner’s story continues inspiring women living with abuse. This movie can be seen on Sunday, February 8.
On February 20, “Miss Evers’ Boys,” starring Emmy winner Alfre Woodard and Laurence Fishburne, airs on Lifetime. This Black History Month movie recounts the 1930s case when African-American men in a small town were being used as guinea pigs for a syphilis experiment. A brave nurse exposed this atrocity. Although most movies adaptations add dramatic effect, it is worth it to see this movie and look up this information about an event many people don’t know about.
These movies are the highlight of Lifetime movies commemorating Black History Month. As is common with Lifetime Television, there are a few low moments in their commemoration. One movie to skip is “For One Night,” starring Raven-Symone. The movie is a bad adaptation of an event that occurred in Georgia concerning a high school student’s attempt desegregate prom. The movie, however, is set in Louisiana, and all of the actors have bad accents coupled with bad acting. Instead of watching this movie, read the real story of Gerica McCrary at Tolerance.org.
It’s too bad that Lifetime couldn’t have added more quality movies to their roster. The best thing to do is watch the one’s I’ve recommended and do further research on the stories. For individuals who want are interested in other Lifetime movies playing during Black History Month, visit the Lifetime TV website.
Bootie Cosgrove-Mather, “Ga. Students Plan Whites-Only Prom,” http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/05/01/national/main551926.shtml.