10 of the best black coming-of-age films

We’re continuing our Black History Month celebrations by taking a look at some of the best black coming-of-age films. Did we include your favourite?


Set in Inglewood, this film follows a group of ‘geeks’ as their lives change after they attend an underground party. The cast includes Zoe Kravitz, ASAP Rocky and Lakeith Stanfield, as well as music from Pharrell.


This Oscar-winning film is one that lives up to the hype. Moonlight addresses issues such as sexuality and identity and was praised for bringing an alternative portrayal of black men to the fore.


Noel Clarke’s British drama centres around the lives of a group of teens in West London and was the first film of its kind when it was released in 2006.

Boyz N the Hood

Can you believe this was Ice Cube’s acting debut? If you haven’t seen this classic film, it follows Ice Cube and Cuba Gooding Jr’s characters as they take different paths growing up in South Central Los Angeles.

Love and Basketball

This romantic drama follows the lives of two neighbours both pursuing basketball careers in very different ways with a love story woven in.

Like MIke

Starring American rapper Bow Wow, as Calvin who lives in an orphanage with his friends, he finds an old pair of sneakers with faded initials of ‘M.J.’ on the inside and grows up to be an NBA superstar.


Set in Harlem in 1987 this film follows Precious, who has had a rough start in life. She’s overweight, abused and pregnant with her second child, but a new school offers her much needed hope. Get ready though, this is a tearjerker.


ATL stars rapper, T.I., who along with his three friends are each trying to prepare for life after high school, but, as well as preparing for adulthood are also dealing with personal life problems. They all find comfort spending time at their local rollerskating rink, Cascade.

Coach Carter

Coach Carter, also known as Ken Carter, also known as Samuel L. Jackson takes a basketball coaching job at his old high school, unfortunately, he is presented with a bunch of players with poor attitude and poor player performance. Coach Carter sets out to change both.

Cool Runnings

Jamaican sprinter, Derice Bannock is disqualified from the Olympic games, so he teams up with a dishonoured coach to start the first Jamaican Bobsled team.

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