Celebrating Juneteenth: Bringing Back The Hits

June 16th, 2022Celebrating Juneteenth: Bringing Back The Hits

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In June 2021, AMC Theatres hosted its inaugural Celebration of Juneteenth, a special presentation of several high-profile and award-winning movies from African American filmmakers like Spike Lee, Barry Jenkins, and Denzel Washington. The multi-day special event is returning this year in honor of Juneteenth 2022, with four movies playing over the four-day holiday weekend.

Starting Friday, June 17th, 150 participating AMC Theatres locations around the country will be showing a minimum of two showings — one matinee and one primetime start — of JUST MERCY, THE BEST MAN, JUDAS AND THE BLACK MESSIAH, and 42 for a special $5 Fan Faves pricing. But the event won’t last long as it is set to conclude on Juneteenth, which is being celebrated on Monday, June 20th.

But before you check to see if your local movie house is taking part in our Juneteenth program, here is some information on the collection of titles you can watch as part of this incredible program.

Just Mercy

The 2019 biographical legal drama JUST MERCY stars Michael B. Jordan, who takes on the role of Bryan Stevenson, a Harvard graduate who travels to the southern state of Alabama in 1989 to offer legal services for disenfranchised members of the population who cannot afford representation in a variety of court cases. In his pursuits, Stevenson forms an organization called Equal Justice Initiative, which eventually leads him to meeting Walter McMillian, played by Jamie Foxx, who is on death row after being falsely convicted of murdering an 18-year-old girl. Despite the odds, the unlikely pair make a last ditch effort for justice and mercy…

JUST MERCY, which was co-written and directed by SHANG-CHI AND THE LEGEND OF THE TEN RINGS’ Destin Daniel Cretton, originally opened on Christmas Day 2019 and went on to receive a great deal of praise from critics and audiences alike, and earned several award nominations and wins. Those who missed out the first time have a second chance to see it in theatres.

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The Best Man

On the eve of the release of his debut novel, Harper Stewart, played by Taye Diggs, sets off to attend his longtime friend’s wedding. But before he can give his best man’s speech, Harper is forced to confront his past as well as his past relationships before everything is exposed in his soon-to-be-released book. And while the weekend was supposed to be about the wedding of Lance Sullivan, played by Morris Chestnut, the whole ceremony is thrown up in the air when the groom finds out his bride and best friend are withholding information about their college days.

Malcolm D. Lee’s 1999 romantic comedy THE BEST MAN, remains one of the most cherished Black Cinema titles from the final years of the 20th Century, thanks it part to its absolutely stacked cast that also includes Nia Long, Harold Perrineau, Terrence Howard, and Regina Hall, to name only a few. This is a trip down memory lane you don’t want to miss.

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Judas And The Black Messiah

After being arrested for attempting to steal a car and acting like a federal officer, down-on-his-luck criminal William O’Neal, played by LaKeith Stanfield, is given an opportunity to have the charges dropped and avoid jail-time. In order to do this, he must go undercover and infiltrate the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party. As he begins to work his way up the ranks of the Chicago-based organization, O’Neal forms a close bond with the chapter’s leader, Fred Hampton, played by Daniel Kaluuya. But as time goes on, O’Neal finds himself torn between standing beside the young and charismatic leader who could change the world and the FBI agents who want to bring the party crashing down.

Released during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic and debuting on HBO Max simultaneously, JUDAS AND THE BLACK MESSIAH was a critical success and earned two Academy Awards®: Best Supporting Actor for Kaluuya and Best Original Song for “Fight for You.” Shaka King’s 2021 biographical drama was also nominated for Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay, Best Cinematography, and another Best Supporting Actor nod for Stanfield.

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42

The late great Jackie Robinson will forever go down as not only one of the greatest baseball players to ever step out onto the diamond but also one of the most influential figures of the 20th Century. The story of the hall of fame Brooklyn Dodger is told in impressive detail in Brian Helgeland’s 2013 biographical drama 42, which sees Chadwick Boseman play Robinson as he breaks the color barrier and changes the world of professional sports. With the help of trailblazing baseball executive Branch Rickey, played by Harrison Ford, Robinson goes from being one of the biggest names of the Negro Baseball League to a future MLB Rookie of the Year, National League MVP, World Series champion, and first ballot Hall of Famer whose legacy is still felt decades after this career ended.

Although he was not new to the acting world before earning the role of Jackie Robinson, Boseman became an international superstar thanks in part to his performance in 42, which opened the door for movies like CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR, BLACK PANTHER, MA RAINEY’S BLACK BOTTOM, and several other films in the years following. Prior to its return to theatres for AMC’s Black Picture Showcase in June 2022, 42 was brought back to the silver screen in September 2020 to pay tribute to Boseman, who tragically passed away the previous month following an extensive battle with cancer.

All four of these movies will be returning to the big screen for a limited engagement as part of AMC’s Black Picture Showcase from Friday, June 17th to Monday, June 20th. Make sure to check local listings to find out when and where you can see each of these films on the big screen and celebrate Black actors and filmmakers as part of this special presentation brought to you by AMC Theatres.

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