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Personal struggle followed by triumph is a consistent narrative throughout Black History and some of this year’s highly acclaimed television shows and films, including Fences, Hidden FiguresMoonlight and Loving. 

Hidden Figures tells the story of three African American female mathematicians (Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monae and Taraji P. Henson) who became the brains behind astronaut John Glenn’s launch into orbit.

Then there’s Loving, the story of a Black woman played by Ruth Negga, who fought for the legalization of interracial marriages. And of course, Fences, the story about a man whose dream of being a famous baseball player was stripped away.

Needless to say, not only did these films create a conversation about overcoming adversity, but they also dominated the box office.

So on Wednesday night, the African American Film Critic’s Association celebrated the season’s biggest movies and stars, including Fences castmates Viola Davis and Denzel Washington and Loving’s, Negga.

“A lot of people complain about us constantly showing tragedy,” Queen Sugar’s Timon Durrett told HipHollywood while on the red carpet. “But that’s whats made a lot of us strong.”

During the awards show, the association also celebrated the 50-year-anniversary of Sidney Poitier’s classic, Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner, a movie that tackled the controversial conversation surrounding interracial marriages. “Sidney asked Stanley ‘do you think the country is ready for this kind of story,”” Karen Kramer, the wife of the film’s late director, Stanley Kramer told us. “He said ‘no, but we are going to make it anyway.'”

Kramer went on to add that they did a “beautiful job with Loving.

See the full list of AAFCA Award winners and honorees below.

FILM

BEST PICTURE : MOONLIGHT – (A24)

BEST DIRECTOR: BARRY JENKINS, MOONLIGHT – (A24)

BEST ACTOR: DENZEL WASHINGTON, FENCES– (Paramount)

BEST ACTRESS: RUTH NEGGA, LOVING – (Focus Features)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR: MAHERSHALA ALI, MOONLIGHT – (A24)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS: VIOLA DAVIS, FENCES (Paramount)

BEST ENSEMBLE: THE Cast of HIDDEN FIGURES (20TH Century Fox)

BREAKOUT PERFORMANCE 2017 – Janelle Monae for MOONLIGHT AND HIDDEN FIGURES

BEST INDEPENEDENT FILM: “MOONLIGHT” (A24)

BEST ANIMATION FILM; ZOOTOPIA (Disney)

BEST SONG – “VICTORY” from HIDDEN FIGURES (20th Century Fox)

BEST DOCUMENTARY – 13th (Netflix)

BEST FOREIGN FILM – TANNA (Lightyear Entertainment)

BEST SCREENPLAY – AUGUST WILSON, FENCES – (Paramount)

TV

BEST TV SHOW (Drama) – QUEEN SUGAR – OWN

BEST TV SHOW (Comedy) – ATLANTA – FX

BEST TV SHOW (CABLE/NEW MEDIA – UNDERGROUND – WGN

BEST TV SHOW (Special/Limited Series) – LEMONADE – HBO

AAFCA Top Ten Films of 2016 are as follows in order of distinction:

1.       MOONLIGHT – A24

2.      FENCES – Paramount

3.      HIDDEN FIGURES – 20th Century Fox

4.      LION – The Weinstein Company

5.      LALA LAND – Lionsgate

6.      BIRTH OF A NATION – Fox Searchlight

7.      LOVING – Focus Features

8.      MANCHESTER BY THE SEA – Roadside Attraction/Amazon Studios

9.      HELL OR HIGH WATER – Liongsgate/CBS Films

10.  QUEEN OF KATWE – Walt Disney Pictures/ESPN Films

AAFCA Top Ten TV shows of 2016 are as follows in order of distinction:

1.       QUEEN SUGAR – OWN

2.      UNDERGROUND – WGN

3.      ATLANTA – FX

4.      INSECURE – HBO

5.      LUKE CAGE – NETFLIX

6.      THIS IS US – NBC

7.      BLACKISH – ABC

8.      THE GET DOWN – NETFLIX

9.      WESTWORLD – HBO

10.  SURVIVOR’S REMORSE – STARZ

EXCLUSIVES

Review: ‘Kingsman: The Golden Circle’ Is Bigger & Better Than The First

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If you liked Kingsman:The Secret Service, get ready for The Golden Circle. Hands downs this Kingsman is bigger, badder and better than the first.

Director Matthew Vaughn really takes it up a notch and gives fans much more action and fight sequences. Right off the top we see Eggsy (Taron Egerton) in this amazing car chase scene that will have you applauding as soon as the Prince track ends.

And while we’re talking music the film has an amazing sound track. And if you didnt know, Elton John is also in the film acting and singing some of his classic tunes.

What I also loved were the new editions.  Channing Tatum, Halle Berry, Jeff Bridges and Pedro Pascal who play the Statesmen – the American version of the Kingsman –  and the dynamic between the two is pretty comical. Vaughn really explores the difference between the two cultures – mannered men in suits versus macho men in jeans and cowboy boots.

Then there’s Julianne Moore who plays the villain, she’s like this maniacal Martha Stewart esque drug lord and she’s quite good at it.

Now there are some obnoxious moments (like that sex scene between Egerton and Poppy Delevigne).  But I think that’s the point. This franchise is all about turning the spy genre on it’s head and introducing the younger generation to a new type of Bond flick … And we think they are going to love it.

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