Top 10 Slavery Movies of All Time

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Here is the top 10 list of the best slavery movies, ranked by lovers of American history and anyone who has been affected by this dark period in the nation’s past.

#10. Free State of Jones (2016)

Free State of Jones (2016)

The biography of Newton Knight and his uprising against the Confederacy during the American Civil Combat inspired this historical Western war picture.

Jones’ Free State follows individuals who banded together with slaves to fight for what is right. Despite the presence of stars such as Matthew McConaughey and Gugu Mbatha-Raw, the picture got poor reviews, earning just $25 million against a $65 million budget.

#9. Burn! (1969)

Burn! (1969)

Sir William Walker, played by Marlon Brando, is a secret agent recruited by Britain during the Civil War to acquire a profitable sugarcane plantation for the Crown. Along the way, he meets José, a black dock worker who is plotting an insurrection.

The Slaves Revolt occurs one night at a festival, resulting in violence and emphasizing the notion that no one can be owned by another.

Brando declined the major parts in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, as well as the offer to star in Burn. It turned out to be the perfect option, since Brando later stated that this picture had some of his greatest performances.

#8. Amistad (1997)

Amistad (1997)

Steven Spielberg is primarily renowned for his science fiction and fantasy films, but Amistad was a film he made to emphasize the atrocious treatment of individuals enslaved on slave ships. The plot of the film is inspired on the true narrative of the Amistad, a slave ship that sailed in 1839.

Starring Morgan Freeman, Matthew McConaughey, Anthony Hopkins, and Djimon Hounsou. It was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture in 1998, but Titanic, directed by James Cameron, won.

#7. Lincoln (2012)

Lincoln (2012)

Steven Spielberg directs another another picture. Hundreds of thousands of Americans altered their minds after Lincoln followed the late President’s objective to abolish slavery.

Daniel Day-Lewis, who won the Golden Globe for Best Actor for his depiction of Abraham Lincoln, was widely lauded for his performance.

The film is considered a Hollywood smash, with a box office total of $275 million dollars. Steven Spielberg invited Daniel Day-Lewis to fill the starring role after Liam Neeson declined. Leonardo DiCaprio had to persuade him to take the part since he didn’t think he could portray such a famous persona.

#6. Amazing Grace (2006)

Amazing Grace (2006)

During the year 1797, a man named William Wilberforce attempted to put an end to the British transatlantic slave trade.

He has the guts to wrangle up more people to support him when he meets Barbara Spooner, a lady who believes in his purpose. His old approach is one of them, as is a former slave ship captain who composed the hymn Amazing Grace.

Amazing Grace was praised for its meticulous attention to detail and historical correctness. Surprisingly, the film was completed in only two days utilizing 516-millimeter cameras.

#5. Glory (1989)

Glory (1989)

Glory stars Matthew Broderick, Denzel Washington, and Morgan Freeman and is directed by Edward Zwick. It is based on the events of the 54th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment.

This film, like many of the others in this category, was based on the novel Lay This Laurel. The only difference is that the novel was published only 16 years ago.

Glory is regarded as one of the most compelling and historically accurate films about the American Civil War, not just because it was the first full film to focus on black troops throughout the conflict.

#4. Spartacus (1960) 

Spartacus (1960) 

Spartacus and Tracy were both born and raised as slaves. He vows to rebel against his master and the other authorities after being sold to a Gladiator trainer and taught how to murder in the arena. He quickly assembles a band of like-minded rebels who go from town to town, releasing others in the process.

They journey to Italy with a plant across the water and return to their homes under the leadership of the film’s namesake, but things don’t go as planned.

#3. Ben-Hur (1959)

Ben-Hur (1959)

Charlton Heston earned a name for himself in this picture. Ben-Hur was a remake of the silent film of the same name released in 1925. Ben-Hur was the greatest budget of any Hollywood picture at the time, with a $15 million budget and a $66 million gross in the first six months.

Ben-Hur won an incredible eleven Academy Awards, including best motion picture, best director, and best film editing, among others.

#2. 12 Years a Slave (2013)

12 Years a Slave (2013)

 

The film is based on the actual story of a free black man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery. Solomon Northup’s horrific story of racial abuse, dehumanization, hope, and finally justice is chronicled in 12 Years a Slave.

Chiwetel Ejiofor first declined Steve McQueen’s offer to play the lead, but later agreed. He studied the history of the plantations and learned to play the violin in preparation for the part.

#1. Django Unchained (2012)

Django Unchained (2012)

Django Unchained is a film about a slave who is escorted by a German bounty hunter named Dr. King Schultz in a wholly unusual take on a slave film.

Dr. King Schultz freezes Django, and the two proceed on a hunt for the South’s most wanted criminals. Calvin Candy, a larger-than-life plantation owner who is still keeping Django’s wife as a slave, is the destination of their escapades.

Interestingly, Jamie Foxx rode his own horse, Cheetah, throughout the production of the picture. He had purchased the horse four years prior, making it the ideal working partner.

On the IMDb website, the film scored an 8.4 on a ten-point system, and a Metacritic meta score of 81.


This was our top ten Slavery Movies of All Time list. We have been able to compile a great list of the best Slavery Movies of All Time. Do you agree with our list? If you have any suggestions or comments please shoot them down in the comments below. 

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