10 Movies about Black Slavery

Black history and culture is incomplete without mentioning the horrid period of slavery when Africans were dispersed across the world as slaves. Today, there are representations of slavery in movies of different genres. These movies about black slavery can take you back in time to learn the history and suffering old African generations passed through.

Movies about Black Slavery

1. The Quest for Freedom (1992)

The genres of the movie are biography, drama, and family. The movie’s story centers around Benjamin Ross, a rebellious young African American and the abolitionist Harriet Tubman. He was mysteriously trapped in the past with Harriet, experienced life as a slave, and their escape to freedom. The movie starred actors like Summer Selby, David King, and Reg Grant.

2. Ill Gotten Gains

The movie’s genres are drama and history. The movie’s setting was in 1869, West Africa, when slave trade was illegal. It tells the story of the revolt on a slave ship – 24 male slaves fighting a battle for their lives. The lead cast in the movie are Djimon Hounsou, Akosua Busia, and De’aundre Bonds.

3. Tula: The Revolt (2013)

The movie was set in 1795 during the slavery era in a Dutch colony. The genres of the movie include drama, war, and history. The movie is about Tula, the leader of a large slave uprising, in his stand against slavery, oppression, and stance towards equality and brotherhood. The movie starred actors like Danny Glover, Jeroen Krabbé, and Deobia Oparei.

4. Night John

The movie’s genre is drama and it centers around a young slave character, Sarny. Sarny, facing a life of servitude, meets Night John, who taught her how to read and write, and together they set out to free other slaves. Actors who starred in the movie include Beau Bridges, Bill Cobbs and Carl Lumbly.

5. Freedom (2014)

The movie’s genres are drama and music. The movie’s settings were in 1856 and 1748. It tells the story of slave Samuel Woodward and his family’s escape from slavery through the Underground Railroad in 1856, and his great-grandfather’s sailing on a slave ship from Africa to America in 1748. The main actors in the movie include Cuba Gooding Jr., Sharon Leal, and David Rasche.

6. Captive Heart: The James Mink Story

The genre of the movie is drama. It is a story about James Mink, a black affluent man in 19th century Canada, who had his daughter sold into slavery by her intended husband, an American businessman. Together with his wife, Elizabeth, a white woman, they went to rescue their daughter by following the Underground Railroad. The movie’s actors include Louis Gossett Jr., Kate Nelligan, and Ruby Dee.

7. Django Unchained (2012)

The movie’s genres include drama and western. The story is about Django, a freed slave, who, with the help of a German bounty hunter, sets out to rescue his wife from a cruel plantation owner in Mississippi. The actors in the movie are Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, and Leonardo DiCaprio.

8. 12 Years a Slave (2013)

The movie genres are biography, drama, and history. It is the story of a free black man from New York, Solomon Northup, who was kidnapped and sold into slavery. The stars in the movies are Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Kenneth Williams, and Michael Fassbender.

9. I Am Slave (2010)

The movie’s genres include biography, drama, and thriller. The movie’s setting is in London’s slave trade period, centered around a woman’s struggle for freedom. The lead actors in the movie are Wunmi Mosaku, Isaach De Bankolé, and Lubna Azabal.

10. Race to Freedom: The Underground Railroad

The movie genres are drama and history. It was set in the era of slavery, about the struggles of slaves to escape slavery through the slave escape network – the Underground Railroad. The lead actors in the movie are Falconer Abraham, Dwight Bacquie, and Janet Bailey.


The films about black slavery depict the suffering and struggle that African men and women endured at the hands of their slave masters. In their valiant struggle for freedom, honor, family bonds, and brotherhood were held sacred. The movies about black slavery aren’t only to learn history, but to learn real life lessons about strength and courage inherent in the black men and women.

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