Docudrama | English | 125 minutes


In 1840s Maryland, a slave state, Araminta “Minty” Ross is newly married to a freedman, John Tubman. Living on the Brodess farm, Gideon Brodess, the owner, reneges on the promise to give Minty her freedom. Minty escapes by jumping off a bridge into an icy river. Miraculously, she survives. Minty arrives in Philadelphia and hooks up with Marie Buchanon, the daughter of a freed slave, and Wiliam Still, an abolitionist. Now a free woman, Araminta changes her first name to Harriet and uses her husband’s last name, Tubman. She decides to return to John only to find out he remarried when he thought she had drowned. Devastated, Harriet dedicates her life to freeing slaves as a conductor on the Underground Railroad. She acquires a reputation and is dubbed the new “Moses.” Over her lifetime, Harriet saved seventy slaves through the Underground. Later she became a spy for the Union Army during the Civil War and managed to rescue another seven hundred fifty slaves.

Cynthia Erivo (Araminta “Minty” Ross/ Harriet Tubman) / Zackary Momoh (John Tubman) / Joe Alwyn (Gideon Brodess) / Leslie Odom, Jr. (Wiliam Still) / Janelle Monae (Marie Buchanon)
Why Stream This Film?
African-Americans have very few heroes during the era of slavery. Harriet Tubman was one. And,  fortunately, her inspiring life is so  brilliantly depicted in this film.  
  • Rotten Tomatoes Score (Critics Consensus): 73%
  • Metacritic Score: 66
  • Academy Awards: Nominated, Best Performance by an Actress (Cynthia Erivo)
  • Golden Globe Awards: Nominated, Best Actress in a Motion Picture (Cynthia Erivo)
  • Hollywood Film Awards: Winner, Breakout Actress (Cynthia Erivo)
The intensity and lyrical fervor of Kasi Lemmons’s direction lend this historical drama about Harriet Tubman’s escape from slavery and her work with the Underground Railroad the exalted energy of secular scripture.
Richard Brody

The New Yorker

It is rousing and powerful drama, respectful of both the historical record and cravings of modern audiences.”
A.O. Scott

The New York Times

History, heroism and leadership are the stuff of Kasi Lemmons’ rousing and heartfelt film about the life and times of Harriet Tubman, the Spartacus of the American south.
Peter Bradshaw

The Guardian

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