“When we say ‘Black Lives Matter,’ we also mean ‘Black storytelling matters.'” This was the opening sentence of a post through which Netflix expressed their sympathies for the civil rights protests that have swept through the country following the death of George Floyd, an African American victim of racially-motivated police brutality.
Although the bulk of the battle of racism has to be fought in the streets of cities, courts of law and halls of government, Netflix also has an important part to play in this struggle. As a platform for entertainment, it can not only enable creators from compromised backgrounds to tell their stories, but – in doing so – also enable its subscribers to see the world through another person’s eyes, an experience which has proven to foster understanding and solidarity.
To that end, the streamer has been busy bringing us a tremendous amount of content by, for and/or about African Americans and a lot of it’s featured in their new Black Lives Matter section. Among these are the documentaries Who Killed Malcolm X, which came out earlier this year, and What Happened, Miss Simone?, a movie that was initially released in 2015. The former investigates the assassination of one of modern history’s most accomplished activists. The latter explores the politically active life of singer Nina Simone, and both are as educative as they are excellent.
When you log onto Netflix today, you will see a carefully curated list of titles that only begin to tell the complex and layered stories about racial injustice and Blackness in America. https://t.co/dN6XQmsrGK pic.twitter.com/3CIrrno6mw
— Netflix (@netflix) June 10, 2020
The streamer also offers content that shows African American life as it is today rather than what it was several decades ago – even if the two time periods appear increasingly similar. Take, for instance, the Netflix original Dear White People.
Based on a 2014 film of the same name, it follows a group of colored students as they navigate their way around an Ivy League school that isn’t as inclusive as it thinks itself to be. Although the website What’s On Netflix thinks the show might not be renewed, that’s highly unlikely given the current state of the world.
Elsewhere, they’ve got films like Malcom X, Da 5 Bloods, Mudbound and many, many more. Suffice it to say, there’s a lot in Netflix‘s new Black Lives Matter section to enjoy and we look forward to seeing what else they add in the coming weeks.