A review of “Driving Miss Daisy”, a 1989 dramedy film that was adapted for the big screen from an Alfred Uhry off-Broadway play. The movie is primarily about the life of Daisy Werthan (Jessica Tandy), an incredibly stubborn and rude older woman living in Atlanta. Hoke Colburn (Morgan Freeman) is hired to work as Miss Daisy’s chauffeur in the 1940s and we see moments from their relationship and events of the time over 25 years. The film was nominated for nine Academy Awards and won four.
New Jack City is a 1991 Mario Van Peebles film about a Harlem drug kingpin and the local police force that is intent on bringing him down. Nino Brown (Wesley Snipes) along with his right-hand man Gee Money (Allen Payne) and their Cash Money Brothers crew rise in the drug underworld as they expand into selling crack cocaine. The new drug brings large profits but also distrust among the once-solid crew as the neighborhood deteriorates due to violence and increased drug addiction which draws the attention of Scotty Appleton (Ice-T), an undercover police officer.
A review of “Dead Presidents”, a 1995 Hughes Brothers film about a young man who serves in the Vietnam War with hopes of charting his path in the world but is instead scarred by the atrocities of war. Drawing on the blaxploitation genre, the movie follows Anthony as he returns home to the Bronx in the early 1970s and struggles to cope with what is likely undiagnosed PTSD. As Anthony faces difficulties finding stable employment and supporting his young family, he is drawn into a heist that could provide him and his friends with life-changing money.
A review of School Daze, a 1988 Spike Lee film (or shall I say “joint”) about the divisions between various factions on the campus of a fictional HBCU. Former friends turned foes, Dap and Julian are leaders of their respective social groups on Mission College’s campus. Interactions their crews as well as other individuals during homecoming weekend lead to conversations about colorism, classism, sexism, hazing, Black identity, and more.
“The Tuskegee Airmen” is a 1995 made for TV semi-fictional drama about the Tuskegee Airmen, America’s first all-Black Air Force squadron. Formed in Tuskegee, Alabama, the group was initially an experiment to gauge the suitability of Black men to serve as fighter and bomber pilots. Laurence Fishburne is joined by several other popular Black male actors of the time in a portrayal of the young pilots who competed for the opportunity to train and fight in World War II. The men brave the dangers of flight school while also contending with prejudice to become one of the most well-respected air combat squadrons.