Even though Black Panther dispels certain ideas of what films can sell at the box office, we've barely scratched the surfaces of science fiction narratives featuring Black faces.
Who says Wakanda has to be the limit? Here are 6 Black science fiction films, both short and feature length, that you should watch:
1. The Brother From Another Planet
Released in 1984, The Brother From Another Planet stars Joe Morton as an alien who crash lands in New York City. Directed by John Sayles, the film received three and a half out of four stars by revered critic Roger Ebert upon release and currently stands at 88 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.
Kenyan auteur Wanuri Kahiu earned rave reviews for her 2018 LGBTQ drama, Rafiki. However, based on her 2010 short, Pumzi, it is clear that Kahiu's roots lie in Afrofuturistic storytelling. Pumzi is set in a dystopian future 35 years after World War III tore the world apart and water is scare . It centers around a young woman who comes across a growing seed and scour for other signs of life. With a compelling and visually stunning cinematography, Pumzi is the perfect candidate for feature film potential in a post-Black Panther world.
3. Son of Ingagi
When we say science fiction films with all-Black casts are nothing new, we literally mean it! Released in 1940, Son of Ingagi was the first science fiction film to feature an all-Black cast. Written by and starring Spencer Williams, Son Of Ingagi tells the tale of Eleanor and Bob Lindsay, a newly married couple who inherit a doctor's house.
4. An Oversimplification Of Her Beauty
In his directorial debut, Terence Nance blends sci-fi, animation and romance into a film about a young man who is stood up on date by an alluring woman. Premiering in 2012 at the Sundance Film Festival, the film has gone on to receive positive reviews. Nance has gone on to become the creator of the acclaimed HBO sketch show, Random Acts Of Flyness. He's also directing Space Jam 2.
Directed by Donovan V.C., Departure stars Hari Williams and Natascha Hopkins as Adeem and Efa, an alien couple who reside on Earth as human beings to determine if it has proper living conditions for their race. The couple soon become the target of a special agent played by Paul Stratham. Director Donovan V.C. seamlessly blends elements of noir and jazz into a compelling science fiction narrative that tackles the questions arise when you discover a new home.
6. Space Traders
Based on a true story by Derrick Bell, Space Traders was directed by Reginald Hudlin and writer Trey Ellis. The story revolves around a group of extraterrestrials who arrive to America and offer them a verity of technological advances, such as gold and nuclear power. Here’s the catch -- the aliens will only extend these benefits if America hands all of its Black people to them. The television adaptation centers on a conservative African American politician between looking out for his own people or sell them out for the self interest of his white colleagues.