To celebrate Black History Month, I’ll be sharing a few documentaries throughout the month that have a particular focus on African American culture told through non-fiction film.
I’ll begin with one of my favorite films in the last few years is Brick City (2009), which aired as a documentary series on the Sundance Channel. The filmmakers Mark Benjamin and Mark Levin do a remarkable job of capturing the daily drama of Newark, New Jersey, a community striving to become a better, safer, stronger place to live.
Against great odds, Newark’s citizens and its Mayor, Cory Booker, fight to raise the city out of a half century of violence, poverty and corruption. Booker, an outspoken and charismatic mayor who many compare to Barack Obama, works with Police Director Garry McCarthy, youth mentors, Blood and Crip gang members and other citizens on the front line to bring peace and prosperity to their once-proud city. Here’s a short clip:
Available through multiple outlets, including First Run Features (distributor) for purchase.