The Black Panthers commanded national awareness from the moment the group formed in 1966. Whether you were a fellow radical, an average observer sympathetic to civil-rights expansion but fearful of violent measures designed to speed its fruition, in law enforcement (most especially the FBI), or just a plain-vanilla bigot, you paid attention to the Panthers. The party's leaders, Huey Newton and Bobby Seale, were notorious — revered by many, reviled and feared by many. The Panthers have been extensively chronicled, analyzed and debated within a multitude of books and academic papers, but until now the medium of film had lagged behind. The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution catches it up. Stanley Nelson's new PBS-funded documentary synthesizes historical data, archival footage and interviews to present a richly detailed view of this decisive period in our country's story. The Black Panthers screens at 7:30 p.m. Friday through Sunday (September 18 through 20) at Webster University's Moore Auditorium (470 East Lockwood Avenue; 314-968-7487 or www.webster.edu/film-series). Tickets are $4 to $6.