Why We Laugh: Black Comedians on Black Comedy (2009)
- Documentary | Comedy
An off-screen narration, four dozen talking heads, and clips of performances tell a chronological story about Black comedy: who has made us laugh since 1901, what is the nature of their humor, and what social and political contexts inform it. We look at minstrels, Stepin Fetchit, "Amos 'n Andy," "Beulah," Redd Foxx, Dick Gregory, Flip Wilson, Bill Cosby, Richard Pryor, Eddie Murphy, "The Cosby Show," Chris Rock, Whoopi, "Hollywood Shuffle," entrepreneurship and Black comedy clubs, Robert Harris, urban street culture and "In Living Color," the rise of the Fox network, Def Comedy Jam, and the Original Kings of Comedy. The film asserts Black comedy helps America change.