Juneteenth is one of our most powerful American celebrations. In 1863, President Abraham Lincoln had enacted the Emancipation Proclamation, meant to free all slaves in the confederate states — but Texas, a remote and rebellious state, barely attempted to enforce the rule, keeping many enslaved. On June 18th, 1865, 2,000 federal soldiers finally made it to Texas to occupy the state in a show of strength and resilience. One day later, June 19th, General Gordon Granger announced that the Black Americans still enslaved in Texas were emancipated and made free. That announcement has since been celebrated every June 19th in what we call Juneteenth.
To celebrate your Juneteenth weekend, we’ve curated a list of 20 films that celebrate Black joy, celebration, and inspiration — and are all available on the most popular streaming services. Enjoy these wonderful films, celebrate this wonderful holiday, and continue the fight for Black justice in every way you can.