Movie Mom

For Black History Month, take a look at this neglected gem about the first black baseball player to play in the major leagues. The primary appeal of this movie is that Robinson plays himself (with Ruby Dee as his wife). It is forthright about the racial issues, but inevitably appears somewhat naive by today’s standards.

Connections: Dee appears as Robinson’s mother in a worthwhile made-for-television movie called “The Court-Martial of Jackie Robinson.” Older kids might enjoy the episode of the Ken Burns “Baseball” series that covers the integration of the major leagues. And mature teens should see “Bingo Long Travelling All-Stars and Motor Kings,” a lively (and sometimes raunchy and violent) story about the last days of baseball’s Negro League.

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