Near the end of the documentary, "Tina," the legendary, raspy-voiced superstar singer is escorted into a Broadway play based on her life, "Tina: The Tina Turner Story," with screaming, adoring fans mobbed all over the scene and surrounding her as she makes her way inside. On one arm is Tina's husband since 2013, Erwin Bach, and on her other arm is none other than her close friend, Oprah Winfrey.
It took me a few seconds to even realize that Oprah was there, and the fervorous fan-base chanting Tina's name also couldn't care less. Tina still has it...and is still such a force to be reckoned with that you don't even notice when she's standing next to Oprah Winfrey. Tina is larger than life, larger than Oprah...an icon and an inspiration to many. But arriving at that precise moment outside the theater, happy, content and in love, is really a tremendous testament to the endurance of Tina Turner. I'd say her rise was impossible, if only Tina hadn't in fact made it possible.
The tumultuous, incredible life of Tina Turner is on full display in the new HBO Max documentary film, simply titled "Tina." It takes what you may know about her and goes deeper than ever before, and is an emotional swan song for the now 81-year-old legend, who is deciding to slowly bow out of the limelight after all these years.
Billie Eilish is about the biggest star on the planet at the moment, the singer/songwriter sensation who at age 15, uploaded a song to SoundCloud ("Ocean Eyes") and went on to become one of the most iconic and beloved stars of her generation. Her second album, 2019's "When We Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?" was one of the best-selling album of 2019, with her number-one hit "Bad Guy" going platinum ten-times-over.
She's won two American Music Awards, three MTV Video Music Awards and five Grammys...becoming the youngest and only the second-ever to sweep the four major Grammy categories - Best New Artist, Record of the Year, Song of the Year and Album of the Year - in a single year (if you're wondering who the first person to do this was, it was Christopher Cross in 1980).
Eilish did all this before turning 19...and the most fascinating part of her deeply-compelling, revealing new documentary, "Billie Eilish: The World's A Little Blurry" (debuting on Apple TV+ on Feb. 26th), is just how glaringly adolescent Eilish still is. Despite being responsible for lyrics and vocals far beyond her years, we see Billie having boy trouble, getting her driver's license, handling the tremendous physical and emotional pressures that come with fame and fortune, and obsessing about Justin Bieber.
In other words, she's just your average teenager, other than the fact that Billie Eilish's talents as an artist are anything but average.
The title: "The United States vs. Billie Holiday," implies a movie that will feature some sort of lawsuit against one of the greatest jazz singers of all-time. But this is no court-room drama. Instead, the title categorizes not only how Holiday fought against the norms of the time, but how the FBI tried desperately to silence her voice both literally and figuratively.
Shocking the world and making 2020 suck even more than it already did, Chadwick Boseman was announced dead this past August at just 43-years-old. Boseman had been battling colon cancer since 2016, despite continuing to work. What a life, what a career.
Don't try adjusting your set...when you play "Sound of Metal" on streaming, the closed-captioning option is locked to the "on" position. That's just one of the many ways this film will put you in the skin of a person living in the Deaf Community. With a brave, powerful performance by Riz Ahmed, the use of silence in "Sound of Metal" (available on Amazon Prime on 12/4) has never been quite so clear, or as powerfully portrayed.
5 out of 5 stars
Run Time: 1 hour 34 minutes, Rated R
Narrated by Laurence Fishburne
Featuring: Fishbone, Norwood Fisher, Angelo Moore, Ice-T, Flea, Gwen Stefani, Branford Marsalis, George Clinton
Directed by Lev Anderson and Chris Metzler (Plagues and Pleasures on the Saltan Sea)
If you haven’t heard of the band Fishbone, you’re not alone. Fishbone is not too well-known, although they’ve been redefining music for over 30 years. Everyday Sunshine: The Story of Fishbone is a documentary film about the band that should have been your typical Behind the Music-esque exploration of a musical group and their struggles with fame, fortune, and glory. The only problem is that Fishbone is not your typical band, and its members have not gone down the typical path. In fact, there arguably isn’t a more original sound out there. Fishbone has left a mark on the music industry and should be recognized, and with Everyday Sunshine, you are given the argument as to why this is so…a compelling argument that results in what may very well be the most entertaining documentary of the year.
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