Oprah is homebound with Covid-19, as she has a pre-existing lung condition, but that has not dampened her commitment to highlighting racial injustices.
In a special series on OWN, Winfrey is premiering Oscar nominated director, Ava DuVernay’s, short film August 28: A Day in the Life of a People. The film is star studded and includes Lupita Nyong’o, Andre Holland, Angela Bassett, Michael Ealy, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Don Cheadle, Regina King, and David Oyelowo.
The film, originally commissioned by and for The National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. is available for all to watch for free and from your own screen via The OWN Youtube channel.
As someone who has watched it, I can tell you it is DuVernay at her best. As has been shown with her online Film School that set Twitter aflame, then her Array 101 learning companion to her series When They See Us, DuVernay has proven herself to be a one of cinema’s most formidable teachers. Instead of chalk she uses a lens.
She has not let us down with August 28. We are taken on a journey that is both unique and poetic. Without giving too much away, I will say that as a short film buff I can only hope that this one is given a wide release and given a chance at the Academy Award this year.
It explores August 28th as a special date in African American history. Over the course of 100 years, historic events like the murder of Emmett Till, The March on Washington, Motown’s first number one record, Hurricane Katrina, and Barack Obama’s acceptance speech as the first Black Democratic nominee for President, all occurred on August 28. All done in prose with a deep rich palette and intimate cinematography.
The significance was made deeper this year as we realize that August 28th is also the day that we lost Chadwick Boseman, our Black Panther. His impact on the culture is immeasurable and we wonder if maybe it will get an update or an extension. Bringing this film to a large audience was truly an act of service and a gift of love.
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