In honor of Black Music Month, the Urban Movie Channel (urbanmoviechannel.com) is streaming an impressive slate of documentaries and feature films.
The list includes the 2009 film Welcome to Blakroc. The documentary goes behind the scenes of the making of the BlakRoc studio album from the Black Keys in collaboration with Damon Dash, who oversaw the project. The album and film also features guest appearances from Mos Def, Pharoahe Monch, Nicole Wray, Raekwon, RZA, Q-Tip and the late Ol’ Dirty Bastard.
There’s also the 2004 movie Brother to Brother starring Anthony Mackie as a gay teen who moves into a shelter and meets an older poet who was a part of the Harlem Renaissance. Through their friendship, Mackie’s character Perry learns that Black gay men were also ostracized and discriminated against in the 1920s and ’30s.
Beginning Friday June 17, the Urban Movie Channel will stream two documentaries on Tupac. The first, Tupac Shakur Vs shows the 25-year-old rapper, as a misunderstood artist. Tupac was slain in 1996 in the prime of his life and career. The film also includes a rarely seen interview with the rapper a year before he was killed. The second documentary, Tupac Shakur: Before I Wake, takes a look at his life through the eyes of Russell Simmons and the late Eazy-E.
On Friday June 24, curious Nina Simone fans can stream the controversial Zoe Saldana movie Nina, which tracks the legendary singer’s later years and battles with mental illness and alcoholism. It should also be noted that Nina arrived in theaters two months ago but is already available online.
WANT MORE FROM ESSENCE? Subscribe to our daily newsletter for the latest in hair, beauty, style and celebrity news.