Sergio Mims examines images of the Black male in American Cinema from BIRTH OF A NATION to ONE NIGHT IN MIAMI. How have Black men been portrayed in American films from the silent era to today? We’ll examine stereotypical depictions of Black men in film and how these have contributed to negative perceptions of Black men in society.  However, the series will also examine efforts by filmmakers to counteract those images and even satirize them.

This course will take place virtually over Eventive. Films are watched by participants outside of the course schedule. The Film Center does not provide access to films; please refer to this page for a list of sources.  All films are available for free or for a small rental fee on various streaming platforms. 


Member ticket* - $6

General Admission ticket - $12

Member series Pass* - $45

General Admission series pass - $90

SCHEDULE: April 5 through May 31, / Mondays at 6:00 pm CT

If you have purchased a pass, please register for each lecture. If you are only interested in a few of the lectures click on the lecture you are interested in purchasing a ticket

April 5: THE BIRTH OF A NATION (D.W.Griffith, 1915, 193 min.) 

April 12: THE GIRL FROM CHICAGO (Oscar Micheaux, 1932, 70 min.)

April 19: CABIN IN THE SKY  (Vincente Minnelli, 1943, 98 min.) 

April 26: NO WAY OUT (Joseph Leo Mankiewicz, 1950, 106 min.) 

May 3: UPTIGHT (Jules Dassin, 1968,104 min.)  

May 10: IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT (Norman Frederick Jewison, 1967, 110 min.) 

May 17: SUPER FLY (Gordon Roger Parks Jr., 1972, 93 min.) 

May 24: MO BETTER BLUES (Spike Lee, 1990, 122 min.) 

May 31: ONE NIGHT IN MIAMI (Regina King, 2021, 104 min.) 


Sergio Mims is a film critic, journalist, the host and producer of the weekly Bad Mutha’ Film Show on WHPK-FM (88.5 FM Chicago), and a screenwriter who appears every week on the Movie Madness podcast on the Now Playing Network. He is also the co-founder and co-programmer of the Black Harvest Film Festival in Chicago, which is one of the largest Black film festivals in the world and will be celebrating it's 27th year in 2021. Sergio is a member of the Chicago Film Critics Association and is also a commentator for Blu-ray DVDs for Vinegar Syndrome, Kino Lorber, Arrow Films, and Imprint Video.

*You are eligible for member pricing if your Film Center membership was in good standing when we paused our theatrical programming in March 2020 or if you have purchased or renewed your membership in the time since. If you purchase or renew today, your membership will not be officially activated until re-open, but you will continue to receive intermittent perks--like these discounts! 

Please email us at, including your name and the series passes/individual lectures that you would like to purchase, and we will send you unique codes to use at checkout.