10 Black Movie Classics You Must See or Re-watch for Black History Month

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Black History Month is here and while the month is short and will be over before you know it, it’s a month where African-Americans of times past and present are honored for their sacrifices, achievements and accomplishments marked throughout history. It’s a time for us to reflect on that rich history and celebrate the lives of the ones lost and present whom paved the way for generations of other African Americans to walk in freedom and while this movement is still a “work in progress” for the most part, we’re proud that they stood fearlessly in the face of adversity to make sure we have some of the luxuries we have today such as the right to vote.

One way to honor and look back on African-American culture, history, activists and the actors that played them or played parts representing such troubling times is by way of a movie. I personally love watching movies, especially the ones that portray the African-American men and women whom did so much for us. So, if you just happen to have a down day this month and want to celebrate the occasion, listed below are 10 Classic movies portrayed by African-Americans that you should watch in honor of Black History Month. In no particular order they are:

‘Purple Rain’

pURPLE RAIN

What better way to celebrate black history and the life of late-great music legend Prince. The musical drama features some of Prince’s most iconic songs and killer outfits.

‘Malcolm X’

Malcolm X

‘Malcolm X’ is was Spike Lee classic, portrayed by Denzel Washington. The movie chronicled the life of the civil rights hero.

‘Selma’

selma-movie-poster

Ava DuVernay made history with ‘Selma’ in 2014, becoming the first black woman to have her film nominated for “Best Picture” at the Oscars. ‘Selma’ is a portrait piece of Dr. Martin Luther King as he led the march from Selma to Montgomery for voting rights.

‘Glory’

Glory

Free black men were conscripted to fight in the Union Army during the Civil War, but as this 1989 period drama shows, not even their willingness to sacrifice their lives for their country was enough to shield them from racism and segregation. Denzel Washington stars in the role that would nab him his first Oscar.

‘Barry’

Barry

‘Barry’ is one of two drama films (of what will surely be many) that take a glimpse at the life of a younger former President Barack Obama, the man who would one day become the first black president of the United States.

‘The Princess & the Frog’

Princess and Frog

In 2009, Disney made history by featuring its first ever African-American princess. Anika Noni-Rose portrayed princess Tiana in this film. It’s a beautiful film in which is sure to inspire little girls of all diverse backgrounds that she too can be “A Princess”

‘The Color Purple’

Color Purple

Okay, so there’s really nothing to say about this one but – CLASSIC!!! – No matter how many times I’ve seen this movie – I always need my tissues….

‘The Wiz’

The Wiz

‘The Wiz’ in which stars Diana Ross and a very young Michael Jackson is the black version of ‘The Wizard of Oz’ story.

‘Carmen Jones’

Carmen Jones

Dorothy Dandridge became the first black woman to be nominated for a Best Actress award at the 1954 Oscars for her role in this epic musical, based on Bizet’s tragic opera ‘Carmen.’

‘A Raisin in the Sun’

Raisin in Sun

Starring Ruby Dee and Sidney Poitier, this 1961 adaptation of Lorraine Hansberry‘s play is a film about an African-American family search for the American Dream and what happens when that dream is derailed. While the older version is a true classic, the newer 2008 version in which stars Sean Combs (a.k.a P. Diddy), Sanaa Lathan, Audra McDonald & Phylicia Rashad are performances in which you wouldn’t want to miss.

These movies are sure to give you a dose of the richness of the African-American culture and a sense of why we should celebrate this month each year. We’re not just celebrating the culture but we’re acknowledging the people whom broke barriers in every arena which makes us glad to be a part of such an amazing history. You can find other classics listed here. Did your favorite make the list? If not, then what African American movie(s) are your favorite classics? Let me know in the comments.

 

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

Sunday’s Thought: Did He Just Stand Me Up?? Part 1

photo above courtesy of bing 

My dating life literally went down the tube last year; after years of yo-yo dating and really not acquiring “the one” I decided last year after my last attempt at trying to have a relationship, fizzled out to just go M.I.A with the dating scene. I mean, the relationship  was cool in the beginning but mid-way through I began to see a side of him that I knew wouldn’t be good enough to continue a relationship less known marriage. During that time, God had began to deal with me about my body and giving myself to him, those dealings soon lead me to become so convicted; I stopped cold turkey. Trying to explain that to him was an even bigger chore because he didn’t have a relationship with God, (at least not in the way that I have a relationship with him) so therefore I knew, he wouldn’t understand completely as to where I was coming from.

just don't get it

I knew it was God that was leading me away from that relationship as our time together became less and less and I became unusually busy as ever to try and travel an hour and some change away to see him – before, I would hop on the road with no problem; but soon found that increasingly difficult as the months passed by – soon what seemed like 1000 text messages a day to check up on each other, ended up being 1 text a day, if that and no phone calls. As our lives became like two ships sailing in the night, so did my communication with him – soon, I didn’t take notice to him at all, it was like we never met. But anyways…fast forward….

As God began to deal with me about my alone time, I got the feeling that maybe God just wants me to be alone this season. I suddenly realized that I didn’t’ want to be in a relationship and my new year’s resolution coming into this year was “I’m going to dedicate this whole year to God and not being in a relationship” which was a newbie for me, because when I looked back over my life – I noticed that I had “always” been in some type of relationship with someone, I had never had a year of where I didn’t date at all. So, feeling as if I needed a purge year – 2018 was my year to be “totally” single. I mean, I have two kids (teen and pre-teen) and they need my full attention with no distractions. Well, you know how when you say you’re going to do something and get your mind made up to do it – here comes the enemy with his many distractions, curve balls, twists and gimmicks.

I left work one night and before I reached home, decided to go into the store and pick up a couple of items as the kids were yet, out of school again due to the snow. While on the noodle isle, I seen this guy next to me but didn’t pay him any mind; suddenly he says “Those kids are out of school more than I was when I was growing up,” and of course I responded and said “You got that right!!” So, his conversation didn’t stop there – next thing you know he was telling me about himself, his job, where he was from and how he can’t seem to find the right woman – even though he’s a good man. I briefly told him my mishaps with dating of being the nice girl and finishing last and we laughed and kept conversing, so finally he said – you know what? I want to take you out on a date. I tell you what, the next time we bump into one another – we’re going out! I was a little puzzled because he never asked for my number and how did he know we would ever see each other again. I said okay, cool and we parted ways.

Well, as fate would have it – I had to go back into the store the next day. Prior to going in, I remember thinking to myself – how ironic would it be to see the same guy in here again. And as “serendipity” would have it – as soon as I walked in the store, there he was at the checkout. I couldn’t believe it! Really???, when he saw me – the first thing he said was OKAY, WOW!!! we’re going on a date!!! We conversed some more over the irony of our second visit and he asked, “So, where would you like to go” – I love seafood, so that’s where I suggested and he agreed. Upon leaving (he still didn’t get my number), we walked out (because I wanted to see if he had his own ride, and he did) as we got to his car, he opened his trunk to put in his groceries and pulled out a study bible for me to look at, Wow, I said…that’s nice – I’ve been looking into getting me a study bible. So as he put the bible back into the trunk, he finalized the plans for us to meet at the restaurant at 12:30pm that Saturday….I said okay, see you then and we parted ways.

That night in my prayer time with God – I told him what had happened (not that he didn’t already know, but sometimes God just wants us to talk to him) and I asked God a question that I had never asked him before about any of my relationships. “Lord, if this person is apart of your will for my life, then reveal it to me and if he isn’t, then reveal that to me also” I spoke to a couple of friends about it and let them know what was going on and left it alone (also something else I never did, talk to people about my relationships). Once Saturday came, I can’t say I was pumped but I was more feeling like I was going to meet a friend, I had purchased him a little gift (nothing much) just a token of my appreciation for him paying for the lunch (in which he said he was going to do).

To be continued…..next Sunday 2/18/18

 

This Week

If you’re liking this story, then hopefully you’ll like my other relationship blunders and bloopers in which I wrote about with fictional characters of course – since this is the month of “love and relationships” I thought I would share those dating experiences with you….so starting this Thursday 2/15/18 you’ll get a chance to read my 2 part story series entitled “I Will Wait Until God Says, It’s Time!” Hopefully it’ll make you laugh, think and if you’re currently single whether male or female and struggling with dating or finding the right one, then my hope is that you begin to seek God before you head into another “failed” relationship. Stay Tuned!!

 

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

 

Don’t have time to read? You can listen to this post on Soundcloud below; just push the orange button to play!

Beware of Coupling Season! Are you a Victim?

picture above courtesy of bing

blue-beware

If you don’t know what coupling season is, then let me ask you a question – Do those sappy movies for Christmas such as “A Husband for Christmas”, ” A Kiss for Christmas,” “Getting Married for Christmas” make you sad or angry? Do you find yourself feeling utterly alone and disappointment with your “single” status when other specific holidays roll around, such as Thanksgiving, your birthday and let’s not forget the one day in which everyone shows love – V-DAY! also known as Valentines Day! ❤️

If a month or a week before these holidays hit surface; you find yourself feeling like you want or need to be booed up with someone special or these holidays put you in a somber mood, because either your friends are booed up or married and there you are all alone with no one under your arms to even chat with…PLEASE DON’T LET IT! 🙄

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Coupling season as I call it, is the desire to only want to be with someone when a special holiday or event rolls around and with such movies named above playing for Christmas and the millions of candy and balloons displayed for V-Day – it’s like the world is sending us a signal saying “We’re terrible people for being alone or not paired up with someone special for these very sporadic and short seasons” all those images can make us uneasy with being single and satisfied and put us in a place of being destitute and desperate and because we really desire someone to fulfill this ONE DAY event, we break down our walls and begin to settle for anything – including the guy or woman we “purposely” let go  because they didn’t have any goals or anything to bring to the table. Coupling season can  suddenly make their previous conversations begin to sound good and the guard you put up towards their behavior is justified by “Well, maybe they didn’t really mean it that way.” WRONG!! 😲

They did mean it that way and NO!, they’re still not the “perfect” person you so desire them to be in a relationship either…..so…..WAKE UP! 😴

I can’t tell you how many times, I’ve fell victim to the coupling season, I mean I would get downright depressed; in which would lead me on a desperate search through my phone contacts for “past” relationships that I purposely cut off, only because I didn’t want to be alone. And NO, I was not about to send myself flowers, chocolates nor balloons on V-Day…..Really,???? Like for some reason, that gesture always made me feel weird. And yes, I do know some people that have actually done it and still do it…..smh….😕

Listen, if you’re not booed up, then just because Valentines Day is days away, doesn’t mean that you have to lower your standards just to get hooked up for one day. Girl Please and Boy Bye! Why settle for one day; the one thing you have to realize is this:

 It’s only one Day – Not a Lifetime! ❤️

Valentines Day comes once a year, do you really want to get depressed over that? Yes, I know it may seem sad to go in the store and see all the balloons, bears, cards and boxes of chocolate or the men and women in there whom are shopping for “special loved ones” a.k.a boos that is, but don’t let that get to you. It’s a Day, Not a Lifetime and if I can really be honest?, half of those people are going to go back to being who they truly are the following day.  If you really want to know what love is, just look in the mirror at yourself. True Love starts with you – the candy, balloons, bears and chocolates is not a necessity and do not guarantee love.

❤️ Know who you are and stick to your guns 

As stated above, when those holidays would hit – I would run to the nearest person I axed just so I wouldn’t be alone. In doing that, I soon realized that there was a disconnection in me that I still hadn’t worked out yet because if I had, I would’ve been content and complete with not having anyone on V-Day or any other holiday! Don’t allow a simple holiday knock you off course for waiting for what you really want. Trust me, your time and energy is valuable – don’t exhaust it on something or someone that isn’t worth it, stick to your guns.

Society fills our egos, hearts and heads up with what should happen at a particular time in our lives and if we hadn’t done that BIG thing by a certain age or if we don’t have someone special by the holidays, especially valentines day – then there’s something majorly wrong with you. But I’m here to tell you, there’s nothing wrong with you; you are absolutely fine and no, you’re not the only one celebrating V-Day alone – open your eyes and look around you, there are plenty of people whom are doing it and wilding it out with just a party of one.

So, enjoy being you and being content and satisfied with who you are. I can’t tell you when your “prince or princess” will appear but I will tell you this – good things always come when you least expect it too. Enjoy life, don’t rush or put unnecessary people in places that they don’t belong. You got this all by yourself, I do it all the time and I can’t tell you how happy I am about it. I realize my worth and I also realize the price my worth cost, in which can’t be bought for just one night. Grab your worth by the horns and stick to it – even through coupling season. ❤️

VALENTINES TO ME

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

 

Don’t have time to read?, You can listen to this post via Sound cloud below: just press the orange button to play!

Jalen Bailey is Baking Cookies & Taking Orders for V-Day!

Picture above courtesy of bing

jalen bailey1

About a year ago, I wrote a story about a phenomenal then 8yr old young man by the name of Jalen Bailey whom was cooking up pies and cookies in his kitchen, and these weren’t just any ordinary cookies and pies for the local bake sale at school or church but  had become a lifestyle job for Jalen, whom was destined to make his passion into a profit that would help both he and his mom. Jalen Bailey was using his gift of “baking” to its fullest potential. I wanted to re-share this story to shed even more light on Jalen and his skills and to inform you of how you can get your very own order from Jalen’s bakery. Now that Valentine’s Day or V-Day as I like to call it is fastly approaching, you too can get your hands on some of Jalen’s delectable sweets for either yourself or that special someone in your life. Jalen’s bakery has been doing so great, it caught the eye of Rachel Ray, YESSSSS! the number one chief herself asked Jalen to be a guest on her show. You can read all about Jalen and his reason for baking below as well as watch his appearance on Rachel Ray. I’ll have links below so you follow Jalen’s Bakery Journey and while you’re at it – you can get your yummy order in as well!!

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jalen bailey

 

“I said I wanted to be a millionaire. I thought that wasn’t possible but now I think it is.” Jalen Bailey

Those are the words of 8-year-old Jalen Bailey who started in a baking company called “Jalen’s Bakery” right out of his mom’s small kitchen. Seeing how tiny their kitchen and house was, Jalen decided to put his gift to work by baking and selling cookies –not to get new toys, but to buy his mom a house.

According to HUFF POST, Jalen doesn’t use a cook book, but bakes all of those yummy goods from scratch! This includes his specialty peanut butter cookies, banana nut muffins and vanilla cake in a jar. Just the thought of all of those goodies are making me hungry. The prices for the treats range anywhere from $5 to $15 dollars. He and his mom will even deliver them too you (but only if you’re local).

Jalen’s mom, Sharhonda Mahan, who is a single mother, is his biggest supporter and a business-owner herself. So for Jalen starting his own business didn’t come as much of a surprise to her. According to Sharhonda, Jalen has been receiving many requests for orders and has also baked for his first event in which a vendor offered to purchase a bigger stove for him to keep baking more and more tasty goods.

“He’s very excited. It seems like the more orders he gets, the more excited he gets and the more serious he gets about his business.”

Seeing how passionate and driven her son has been for the past two years about baking and the many requests which floor their door, Sharhonda recently started a GOFUNDME page so that Jalen can start shipping to customers nationwide. The goal is $10,000 for Jalen to own a house, raise funding for college, give back to the community and learn the life of being a young entrepreneur. While this seems like a tall order for an 8-year-old; with Jalen’s drive, his mom’s support and their now booming business, I believe he will be able to complete everything on his list and more.

To keep up with Jalen and find out what he’s cooking up next, you can follow him on one of the social media sites below:

Follow Jalen on his Instagram page entitled jalensblog here

You can place your order for V-Day on his website here 

Get daily motivation, and see his latest recipes on FB here 

The goal of 10K was met, the link to the GoFundMe page above is new and was created so Jalen can help and give back to the community, his goal 2 months ago was to raise enough money to be able to giveaway 200 coats and socks to kids in need. But please visit the page as there are other philanthropy goals that Jalen is doing. What an Inspiration, Way to Go Jalen!!!

 

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

 

Review: My Monday Movie Favorite Is….

photo above courtesy of bing

Question of Faith2

Have you ever questioned God?, I mean – I know that might be a silly question because to be honest; we all have questioned him at one point in time or the other. We question him when he sends us on a path that we’re unsure of, We question him when hard times hit us out of nowhere and We question him when our lives don’t seem to add up the the plans that we had for it – In times like that, we have so many questions and very little trust in a man that has a plan for everything – including tragedies.

In the movie “A Question of Faith” you’ll see three different families of whom’s life all come strategically together by crisis in which drives all their faith to the ultimate test. The movie in which stars, Richard T. Jones, Kim Fields, Jaci Valasquez, T.C. Stallings, C. Thomas Howell, Gregory Alan Williams and Renee O’Connor was produced by Angela White, film producer, talent and business affairs executive and founder of Silver Lining Entertainment. To her accreditation, White is the producer of several films including “The Sin Seer” starring Isaiah Washington, Lisa Arrindell & Salli Richardson (in which is now in my Netflix list of movies to watch), “My Favorite Five” which stars Rochelle Aytes, Brian White & DeRay Davis (this movie was hilarious and on point; single ladies will love this one – I sure did), “The Last Letter” and “The Comedy Underground Series.” In producing “A Question of Faith”-  Angela White became the first African-American female to release a theatrical faith based film (Go Girl!!!)

Angela White

‘A Question of Faith’ transcends time, race, gender, class and religious ideology. This is a film that can open one’s heart and make a person reevaluate some of their own personal life decisions. We want people to walk away knowing the word of God is there to comfort you and that having faith in what you can not see is okay, as God has your  life covered, and the questions you may have are already answered.  

Angela White, Producer of “A Question of Faith” 

 

A Question of Faith, is a beautiful story of how God may not always answer our prayers in the way that we think  he should and while we may have many, many questions in regards to the direction of our lives; if we can truly put our trust in him, he has plan and will never, ever let us down. It’s a film that will make you rejoice, think about your own life and cry in the process, knowing that God is not only a healer but a restorer of FAITH! I wasn’t able to make the screenings of this movie when it first came out in September, but I’m so glad, as now it’s at the redbox and available for everyone to see and trust me, you’ll definitely want to rent this one for movie night this week. Spoiler Alert!!! – you’re going to need a BUNCH of tissues!!! I cried and cried and even had to do a couple of rewinds, it was just that powerful and uplifting.

The movie also raises awareness about texting and driving and organ donation in which I thought were good causes and glad that the affects of each, can be recognized and put on display. I know you’ll get something out of this movie – if you’ve ever had questions about God’s plan for your life, this movie will sure give you the Faith you need to still believe. You can follow Angela White on Instagram – as I know for sure, she has many, many more things up her sleeve for 2018!!

For I know the plans I have for you says the Lord, plans to prosper you, to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

So, grab your family, popcorn and your tissues and rent “A Question of Faith”

 

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager