“If tomorrow is judgement day (sing mommy)
And I’m standin’ on the front line
And the Lord ask me what I did with my life
I will say…”
Some of the words used by others in the audience to describe Whitney, the biopic I’ve just seen. With the added bonus of live performances by the London Community Gospel Choir. The wonderful team over @TheBritishBlacklist were kind enough to invite me along to the pre-release screening @BrixtonRitzyCinema
I was catapulted straight into a flashback to the 1980s. With bubblegum pink and scenes from “I Wanna Dance with Somebody”. The film begins there and slowly weaves through Whitney’s life. She’s exactly like any other person: the happy times and the not so happy times, the disagreements and the over the moon ‘life can’t get any better’ moments. All that coupled with the gargantuan talent of the globally successful star.
Houston’s musical ability has a way of entering my core. As the film shows, this sentiment is also echoed by world leaders, actors, the average Joe Banda… I cried. I laughed. I was left tingling. Her experiences gave me butterflies.
It would be unrealistic to exclude the much darker side to events that shaped some of her life. Yet for me, Houston’s legacy will always be her contribution to society – adding value with her singing and not forgetting her acting too.
The format of the film is one part pertinent clips from the zeitgeist (news and interviews with the singer). One part shiny camera setup with family, friends and previous employees being interviewed. As well as one part behind the scenes, home movies shot by her ex-husband and friends. The most memorable parts are the latter. When I saw “the real Whitney” or Nippy, as her family fondly call her. The behind the scenes and candid conversations captured on film. So raw, so poignant and so terrific.
Whitney is out in cinemas nationwide (UK) on July 6, 2018.
The Carat Soup saw this gratis, with thanks to The British Blacklist.