Afro Promo is a feature-length compilation of one-of-a-kind, archival coming attractions trailers from black films of the 1940s, ’50s, ’60s and early ’70s. This historical overview scans the social issue films, plantation dramas, and African safari movies of the 1950s and ’60s, blaxploitation, music and sports biographies, and other genre examples of the ’70s, as it tracks the burgeoning careers of such popular stars as Sidney Poitier, James Earl Jones, Billy Dee Williams, Bill Cosby, and Dianna Ross. Entertaining and educational, Afro Promo provides a compact glimpse at the representation of African Americans through thirty dynamic years of American cinema history.
Director: Jenni Olson & Karl Knapper.
Hardly qualifies as a documentary–it’s just a whole bunch of trailers strung together–but those of us who lived through the 70s in movie palaces will enjoy revisiting some of the great (and horrible) titles of that era. And of course it’s interesting to see the portrayals and language of African-Americans that once was common currency, if no longer.