In the Black community, 2018 has been a great year for futuristic storytelling. Thanks to films like Black Panther and the new satire Sorry To Bother You, there is a renewed interest in stories about the African-American experience in contemporary or future times. Director Boots Riley’s Sorry To Bother You delves into a Black person’s social conscience, tackling issues that have long plagued our community and going further than anyone has ever gone before. If you enjoyed Sorry To Bother You, here are nine more films to see about the African-American experience in dystopia.
These Black dystopian films tackle a wide range of social issues, including corruption in government, technological overkill, racial bias, gender inequality, and general social injustice. Race, identity, and social issues have long been explored in films through ingenuity, whimsy, and emotion. Nevertheless, they’re taking center stage right now, and that’s a good thing. These nine films, ranging from the spooky Get Out to the feminist Brown Girls Begin, are must-sees after you’ve finished watching Sorry To Bother You.
1. Get Out
For people of color, Get Out’s depictions of racial microaggressions against the Black community are all too familiar. To be honest, a society that uses hypnosis to enslave Black people while claiming the government has “no idea” about it is a complete dystopia.
2. Django Unchained
Because it depicts a slave who is turned into an assassin and hero, Django Unchained can be classified as dystopia because of its storyline.
3. Black Panther
Black Panther, of course, makes the cut. We could cure the world if only Wakanda and Vibranium existed.
4. The Forever Tree
As an antiquarian’s apprentice (Olivia Washington), Tawny Bennett (Olivia Washington) sets out to find the fabled tree of eternal life in Africa, this short film is a Black historical fantasy.
5. After Earth
Will Smith and Jaden Smith star in the sci-fi film After Earth as members of a society that has been forced to leave Earth and build a new home in space. Upon returning from their journey, the two find themselves on a desolate planet.
Wanuri Kahiu’s Kenyan short film Pumzi imagines a dystopian future in which water wars have shattered the fabric of society.
7. Brown Girls Begins
Following Ti-Jeanne (Mouna Trouré), who must revive Caribbean spirits and survive a ritual in order to save her people, Brown Girls Begins is set in 2049 on a small island off the coast of Toronto and follows her journey. The movie came out in Canada last year and will be released in the United States at the end of the year.
8. An Oversimplification Of Her Beauty
In An Oversimplification of Her Beauty, a young man must deal with a woman’s rejection in a mix of animated and live-action segments.