With an elegant and soulful soundtrack by The Roots' Questlove enveloping its frames, Black Power Mixtape: 1967-1975 is a powerful documentary that does proper justice to the black power movement and its place in American history.
Taken mostly from unseen 16 mm film shot by Swedish journalists, the often blunt and dramatic footage documents the black experience between 1967 and 1975 while we hear voiceovers from current day artists and activists such as Erykah Badu and Harry Belafonte.
The film is centered around some of the more radical members of the movement, such as a candid interview with Angela Davis while she sits in her jail cell during the infamous Marin County courthouse incident. Her candid views on the movement and the black experience perfectly captures the entire film.
Directed by Goran Olsson, Black Power Mixtape never lags and is handled with respect to its subject and the historical significance of the nine years chronicled. The film gives us a straight-forward account, starting with the movement's inception, which led to its most explosive time with enigmatic and powerful voices such as Stokely Carmichael and the radicalization of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee under his leadership.
It's a complex subject that's treated intelligently and is masterfully edited to give it its proper context, as well as keep the viewer intrigued and fascinated.
Black Power Mixtape
documents a startling time in our history, when the divide ran deep and the frustration over the lack of progress the non-violent civil rights movement was making brewed frustration, action, and, ultimately, made an impact on American history and culture.
You can catch a second screening of Black Power Mixtape: 1967-1975 tomorrow night at 10 p.m. at the Regal Cinemas South Beach (1100 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach). Call 305-674-6766Follow Cultist on Facebook and Twitter @CultistMiami