The Big Cigar 2024 / This miniseries about Black Panther co-founder Huey P. Newton succeeds as a heist, but fails as a meaningful biopic


As a heist story, The Big Cigar is a fast-paced caper that’s easy on the eyes. It’s slickly edited and richly designed, and the actors turn in exciting performances that make you want to tune in. But as a biopic of a complex man, The Big Cigar is confounding at best and frustrating at worst. It zips through many things that Newton publicly struggled with, including drug addiction and the very allegation that caused him to flee to Cuba in the first place. Though it brings up important discussions about revolutionary struggle and emancipation, it’s ultimately more interested in the heist itself, which while admittedly engaging, feels less urgent than the events surrounding Newton’s real life.

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