Best & Worst Black Cinema

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Although 2004 will be remembered as the Year of the Foxx, there were many other noteworthy performances by brothers and sisters in movies besides Jamie's.

Thanks to the colorblind casting of a few courageous directors like Michael Mann, Jonathan Demme and Steven Spielberg, Blacks were more frequently considered for roles otherwise automatically reserved for white actors. As a result, we ended up with the likes of Denzel Washington playing the Frank Sinatra character in the remake of The Manchurian Candidate and with Jamie Foxx's Oscar-worthy work opposite Tom Cruise as cabbie Max Durocher in Collateral.

Unfortunately, there were just as many bad Black outings as good ones, with the year being marked by an extraordinary number of embarrassing Stepin' Fetchit-style showings. If the Black Hollywood renaissance ushered in by Halle and Denzel's Oscar wins only means returning to another era of minstrel shows, I'd just as soon pass. Anyhoo, without further adoo, let's take a critical look back at the best and worst in Black cinema.

10 Best Black Films of 2004:
1. Ray
2. Woman, Thou Art Loosed
3. Hotel Rwanda
4. Chisholm '72
5. Brother to Brother
6. Sisters in Cinema
7. Lightning in a Bottle
8 Beah: A Black Woman Speaks
9. Breakin' All the Rules
10. Hair Show.

Best Actors:
1. Jamie Foxx (Ray)
2. Jamie Foxx (Collateral)
3. Don Cheadle (Hotel Rwanda)
4. Anthony Mackie (Brother to Brother)
5. Ving Rhames (Dawn of the Dead)
6. Bishop T.D. Jakes (Woman, Thou Art Loosed)
7. Mekhi Phifer (Dawn of the Dead)
8. Will Smith (I, Robot)
9. Denzel Washington (The Manchurian Candidate)
10. Charles Dutton (Against the Ropes)

Best Actresses:
1. Kimberly Elise (Woman, Thou Art Loosed)
2. Regina King (Ray)
3. Aunjanue Ellis (Brother to Brother)
4. Sophie Okonedo (Hotel Rwanda)
5. Kerry Washington (Ray)
6. Irma P. Hall (The Ladykillers)
7. Loretta Devine (Woman, Thou Art Loosed)
8. Gabrielle Union (Breakin' All the Rules)
9. Kimberly Elise (The Manchurian Candidate)
10. Aunjanue Ellis (Ray)

Best Directors:
1. Shola Lynch (Chisholm '72)
2. Rodney Evans (Brother to Brother)
3. Yvonne Welbon (Sisters in Cinema)
4. Antoine Fuqua (Lightning in a Bottle)
5. Lisa Gay Hamilton (Beah: A Black Woman Speaks)

Worst Movies:
1. Soul Plane
2. The Cookout
3. My Baby's Daddy
4. White Chicks
5. Barbershop 2

Worst Actors:
1. Snoop Dogg and Method Man (Soul Plane)
2. Eddie Griffin and Anthony Anderson ( My Baby's Daddy)
3. Shawn and Marlon Wayans (White Chicks)
4. Ja Rule & Tim Meadows (The Cookout)
5. Cedric the Entertainer & Ice Cube (Barbershop 2)

Worst Actresses:
1. Halle Berry (Catwoman)
2. Queen Latifah (The Cookout)
3. Eve (Barbershop 2)
4. Mo'Nique (Soul Plane) 5
5. Vanessa L. Williams (Johnson Family Vacation)

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