To celebrate Black History Month, we’re screening several films online – available any time over the weekend of Feb. 26 – 28.
This is a great opportunity to learn more about this history both in Canada and the US.
King in the Wilderness (110 min) focuses on the final two years of Martin Luther King Jr.’s life leading up to his assassination on April 4, 1968. A review in Variety calls this “a searing film because it takes Martin Luther King Jr. down from the mountaintop. You glimpse the real glory of who he was: not a walking monument but a human being with fear, humor, guts, and grace.” Despite enormous pressure, he refused to back away from the civil rights and anti-war challenges of his times.
Canadian content will include three shorter films:
Rush to Freedom (17 min) – In the 1850s, Governor James Douglas fought against American expansionism by bringing hundreds of Black Americans from San Francisco to the area around Victoria where their legacy is still felt today.
Amber Valley (13 min) tells the story of one of the first Black settlements in Canada in Amber Valley, about 100 km North of Edmonton in the early 1900s.
Journey to Justice (47 min) pays tribute to Canadians who fought for Black civil rights from the 1930s to the 1950s. Nine years before Rosa Parks refused to move to the back of a bus in Montgomery, Viola Desmond (now on our $10 bills) refused to move to the Black section of a movie theatre in Nova Scotia in1946. At the same time, Black railway porters were organizing a union for their own protection in one of the few jobs available to them, other Black activists were challenging discrimination wherever they encountered it.