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Summer of Soul (...or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)

Summer of Soul (...or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)
Summer of Soul (...or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)
Summer of Soul (...or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)
  • PG-13
  • 1h 58m
  • 2021
Certified Fresh99%
Common Sense Media Iconage 13+
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Winner of the Best Documentary Critics Choice Award as well as the Grand Jury Prize and Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival, SUMMER OF SOUL (…OR, WHEN THE REVOLUTION COULD NOT BE TELEVISED) is an exhilarating experience. In his acclaimed debut as a filmmaker, Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson presents this powerful and transporting documentary that’s part music film and part historical record, created around an epic event that celebrated Black history, culture and fashion. Over the course of six weeks in the summer of 1969, just one hundred miles south of Woodstock, The Harlem Cultural Festival was filmed in Mount Morris Park (now called Marcus Garvey Park). The footage was largely forgotten – until now. SUMMER OF SOUL shines a light on the importance of history to our spiritual well-being and stands as a testament to the healing power of music during times of unrest, both past and present. The film includes concert performances by music legends Stevie Wonder, Nina Simone, Sly & the Family Stone, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Mahalia Jackson, B.B. King, The 5th Dimension and more.
© 2021 20th Century Studios. All Rights Reserved.

Rotten Tomatoes® Score

Certified Fresh99%
Critics Consensus: Deftly interweaving incredible live footage with a series of revealing interviews, Summer of Soul captures the spirit and context of a watershed moment while tying it firmly to the present.
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Common Sense Media

Common Sense Media Iconage 13+
Common Sense Says
Excellent music doc mixes pop culture, social commentary.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Summer of Soul (...Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised) is a documentary about the Harlem Music Festival. It was a major event that happened the same year as Woodstock, but the footage went unsold due to studios' belief at the time that there was limited audience interest in Black pop culture. While it has themes of communication, compassion, courage, empathy, and perseverance, the film also includes potentially upsetting images/footage of racial violence, including the assassinations of Robert Kennedy, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr.; looting; and cities burning due to racial unrest. A comedian smokes on camera, and drug use/New York's heroin epidemic are also mentioned. Language includes a use of "goddamn," and some song lyrics could be seen as sexually suggestive. There are images from the Broadway musical Hair, which features partial nudity.

A Lot or A Little?

The parents’ guide to what’s in this movie.
Positive Messages
Positive Role Models
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
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Additional Info

  • Genre:Documentary
  • Release Date:July 2, 2021
  • Languages:English
  • Captions:English, Spanish
  • Audio Format:
  • Screen Pass Eligible:No
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