Heaven-sent for sure, there's a powerfully moving documentary in theaters this week that is all about the Queen of Soul.
The documentary "Amazing Grace," puts you right in the front row of Aretha Franklin’s historic concert, recorded at the New Temple Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles back in 1972. Her "Amazing Grace" double-album sold over 2 million copies in the US, was Franklin’s best-selling record, and remains the highest-selling Gospel album of all-time. There were plans to release the footage of this concert back then, but a technical glitch by director Sydney Pollack prevented Warner Bros. from releasing it…until now (interested in what happened? Pollack, who didn't have much documentary experience, failed to use a clapboard, therefore making the syncing of audio nearly impossible).
There’s not much to this doc, it’s just Aretha, Aretha, Aretha, and it’s electric. An interesting side note though: Aretha herself fought against the release of this footage for decades, and it was only until after her death in 2018 that her family negotiated with the filmmakers to have it released.
That being said, "Amazing Grace" perfectly captures a moment in time that will never be duplicated, highlighted by a singular talent who truly was touched by God.
Genre: Documentary, Music. Run Time: 1 hour 27 minutes.
Directed by Sydney Pollack, Alan Elliott
In theaters April 12th, 2019.
(Side Note): I had the incredible honor of meeting Aretha Franklin in person, at the Red Carpet premiere of the 2012 film, "Sparkle." The video is below.
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