Black on the Bayou

Black on the Bayou

2 Episodes

Two films imbued with a rich sense of Louisiana’s landscapes and culture explore the complexities of race, religion, and tradition on the bayou. Shot on sumptuously grainy Super 16 mm, Nuotama Bodomo’s short BONESHAKER evokes the otherworldly atmosphere of the Louisiana swamplands and the transitory nature of the African immigrant experience through its portrait of a Ghanaian family on a sojourn to a remote church where they hope to receive an exorcism for their rebellious daughter (BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD’s Quvenzhané Wallis). The region’s lush terrain also provides the backdrop to Horace B. Jenkins’s lyrical CANE RIVER, a long-lost, recently rediscovered independent gem that tackles the thorny issue of colorism via the story of a forbidden romance between a Black woman and a Creole man.

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Black on the Bayou
  • Boneshaker

    Episode 1

    Directed by Nuotama Bodomo • 2013 • United States
    Starring Quvenzhané Wallis, Caroline Idakula, Playshena Rose Thomas

    A West African family—lost in America—travels to a Louisiana church to find a cure for their problem child.

  • Cane River

    Episode 2

    Directed by Horace Jenkins • 1982 • United States
    Starring Richard Romain, Tommye Myrick, Carol Sutton

    Written, produced, and directed by the late, trailblazing director Horace B. Jenkins and crafted by an entirely African American cast and crew, this luminous, recently rediscovered landmark of ...