Celebrate Black History
Directed by Kathleen Collins • 1982 • United States
Starring Seret Scott, Bill Gunn, Duane Jones
One of the first feature films directed by an African American woman, Kathleen Collins’s LOSING GROUND tells the story of a marriage between two remarkable people, both at a crossroads in their lives. Sara Rogers (Seret Scott), a black professor of philosophy, is embarking on an intellectual quest to understand “ecstasy” just as her painter husband, Victor (Bill Gunn), sets off on a more earthy exploration of joy. Over the course of a summer idyll in upstate New York, the two each experience profound emotional and romantic awakenings. Applying a deft comic touch to a deeply personal exploration of love, race, and gender, Collins crafts a charming, complex tale of personal discovery that, after decades of neglect, has reemerged as a still-fresh landmark of independent cinema.
Up Next in Celebrate Black History
Say Amen, Somebody
Directed by George T. Nierenberg • 1982 • United States
One of the most acclaimed music documentaries of all time is a joyous, funny, deeply emotional ode to gospel music and African American culture. Featuring the father of gospel, Thomas A. Dorsey; its matron, Willie Mae Ford Smith; and earth-...
The Killing Floor
Directed by Bill Duke • 1984 • United States
Starring Damien Leake, Alfre Woodard, Moses Gunn
Originally broadcast on PBS’s “American Playhouse” in 1984, the stirring first feature from actor and filmmaker Bill Duke explores the little-known story of an African American migrant’s struggle to bui...
Paris Is Burning
Directed by Jennie Livingston • 1990 • United States
Starring Dorian Corey, Pepper LaBeija, Angie Xtravaganza
Where does voguing come from, and what, exactly, is throwing shade? This landmark documentary provides a vibrant snapshot of the 1980s through the eyes of New York City’s African America...