Diahann Carroll received her only Oscar nomination for playing Claudine.
Even though Claudine was a film made to try to overcome the negativity of blacksplotation, I can't help but feel the film is riddled with black cliches. It not as 'in your face' as alot of other films of the time, but it still has the bittersweet taste of dealing with situations that I'm sure empowered audiences at the time, but now feel overcooked, like the pregnant daughter for example, extremely poorly handled. But, the story of Claudine is a simple one: an underprivileged black woman in Harlem who tries to raise her six children who are all a challenge themselves. She ends up having a romance with a cheerful garbageman.
The scene where she beats her daughter over a pregnancy is horrible, and her chemistry with James Earl Jones (horrible) is a little non-existent. However, Diahann Carroll still gives a great and interesting performance. She holds the movie together seamlessly and is able to at least communicate her sentimentality to the audience. It may not be breathtaking, but it's still a great performance.