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critics consensus

Deftly interweaving incredible live footage with a series of revealing interviews, Summer of Soul captures the spirit and context of a watershed moment while tying it firmly to the present. Read critic reviews

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Summer of Soul (...Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised) Photos

Movie Info

In 1969, during the same summer as Woodstock, a different music festival took place 100 miles away. More than 300,000 people attended the summer concert series known as the Harlem Cultural Festival. It was filmed, but after that summer, the footage sat in a basement for 50 years. It has never been seen. Until now.

Cast & Crew

Jen Isaacson
Executive Producer
Jon Kamen
Executive Producer
Dave Sirulnick
Executive Producer
Jody Allen
Executive Producer
Ruth Johnston
Executive Producer
Rocky Collins
Executive Producer
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News & Interviews for Summer of Soul (...Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)

Critic Reviews for Summer of Soul (...Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)

All Critics (60) | Top Critics (19) | Fresh (60)

  • As his longtime fans would probably attest, Thompson's music nerdom and sheer enthusiasm for the story of Black music practically leaps off the screen in Summer of Soul.

    February 23, 2021 | Full Review…
  • Questlove revives this electric, never-before-seen, deftly edited footage of Black joy and community, along with interviews of participants.

    February 20, 2021 | Full Review…
  • The footage was shot by producer Hal Tulchin and amassed to about 40 hours in total, but sat dormant for decades... So by resurrecting the event, Questlove has made space for neglected memories.

    February 18, 2021 | Full Review…
  • The events were filmed, but the footage sat in a basement for 50 years. Now it's been compiled into a documentary about a pivotal moment in Black cultural history - and an absolutely infectious film to watch.

    February 10, 2021 | Full Review…
  • This sizzling concert film is a resurrected piece of power-to-the-people art, featuring dizzyingly rich footage from 1969's Harlem Cultural Festival. [It] reclaims a forgotten piece of Black culture with aching timeliness.

    February 9, 2021 | Full Review…
  • Questlove and his rousing, thoughtful documentary links us back to the past with this precious and rare archive.

    February 5, 2021 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

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