Remembering where it started

Good movies to get educated


Jordyn Deschamps

Even though Black History Month is over, it is still important to remember all the stories behind these important historical figures. Watching these movies, implemented a strong theme as to remembering where the African American community came from. 

 ‘Hidden Figures’- ★★★★★

Racism in the workplace has always been present since the beginning of time, and the film “Hidden Figures” portrayed this concept beautifully. “Hidden Figures” follows Katherine Johnson (Taraji P. Hensen), Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monáe), three NASA mathematicians who must help to find a way to launch astronaut John Glenn into space, while jumping over hurdles of not only fighting sexism as women, but also racism as African Americans. 

One scene that really stood out to me was when Katherine Johnson got in trouble after arriving late from just using the restroom. Although visibly shaken by the comment made by her boss, Katherine confronted the situation and stood her ground, adding that there are no colored bathrooms in the buildings, and expressing her frustrations by saying she’s not paid enough for the average woman’s attire within the workplace. 

I could watch this movie three times a day and not get bored. This film’s story line is astounding to watch and fully brings awareness to the sexism and racism one would face in the workplace. 

‘Harriet’- ★★★★☆

After freeing 70 enslaved people in just 13 missions, there is no doubt that Harriet Tubman has earned her place as a prominent historical figure. “Harriet” tells the story of how Harriet Tubman (Cynthia Erivo) was able to escape bondage and help others just like her escape as well. 

When watching this film, I personally felt empowered and able to find the courage to stand up and fight for what I believe in, just like Harriet did throughout her life. The most impactful scene was when Harriet was talking to her former slave owner, he was kneeling on the ground and she standing above him. In this particular scene, Harriet Tubman showed her strength and courage where strength and courage were due. I would definitely recommend this movie — it shows where the African American community first started and instills an inner strength to combat your own personal struggles that you may be feeling. 

‘The immortal life of Henrietta Lacks’- ★★★★☆

Henrietta Lacks Is one of the lesser-known historical figures and is still impacting the world today. At the young age of 31, Henrietta Lacks (Renee Elise Goldsberry) was diagnosed with cervical cancer, and after just a few months, she passed away, but Henrietta’s story doesn’t end there.  Doctors and scientists found that Henrietta’s cells are one of a kind, multiplying and surviving even outside of her body. These cells are now known as the HeLa cells, named after Henrietta Lacks. One thing that upsets me about her story, and that the movie showed so prominently, was that because Henrietta was a black woman, no one felt the need to get consent from her to take her cells, and most importantly, no one told her family about anything that they were doing. 

This movie emphasizes the not only physical but also emotional struggles Henrietta and her family went through. I would for sure recommend this movie to anyone who wants to learn of a person who is lesser known, but is still making a full impact on the world today.