Featuring: Amy Winehouse, Tony Bennett, Mark Ronson, Pete Doherty, Mitch Winehouse (Rated MA – 128 min).
At the youthful age of just 27, jazz influenced, modern soul sounding British musician Amy Jade Winehouse left us for that great arena in the sky alongside many other amazing talents gone too soon. The tragic consequences of this uniquely multiple Grammy Award winning beautiful star with immaculate eyes are brought to light within this would-be controversial documentary.
An intimate portrait, told chronologically beginning of innocent adolescence, we witness her life and body transform before our eyes. Bulimia was a consequence of her downfall as much as excessive consumption of alcohol and drugs.
Her ascent into fame includes stepping into the world of fashion alongside the celebration of her rise up the charts. Not all live performances were as well received with her habits getting the best of her on more than one occasion sighting booing audiences and usually bad critical response. Dealing with the prying press with an agenda in the last part of her life is dramatically brought to light. Unstable relationships also didn’t help her self sabotage.
With full permission to use unseen footage and unheard musical tunes, the filmmakers were originally sanctioned by the Winehouse family with open arms. That has since changed after the finished product was available for viewing. Amy’s father Mitch Winehouse believes she has been misrepresented with the focus on negative aspects calling the film a preposterous portrayal. Be that as it may, the audience will ultimately be the judge with a lot for fans to devour here.
Placing all these elements together is no mean feat. Many of her collaborators appear as talking heads with often glimmering insights on this one of a kind performer.
Shane A. Bassett