2 Jul

You know how it ends but you have to see ‘Amy’.

I sobbed when I heard Amy Winehouse died–sobbed. I mean WTF, I didn’t even know her. No one was surprised of course; she was the proverbial train wreck waiting to happen. But that didn’t mean we didn’t hope against hope.

Come on girl, don’t let your Saturn Return put you in the 27 Club, please. I know you’re hurting, but not like this. Don’t take your gift away just yet, we need you. Don’t go.

Like Sia, Janis Joplin, Lisa Stansfield, Annie Lennox, Lulu, Alison Moyet, Joni Mitchell and Laura Nyro to name a few, Amy Winehouse was accepted as a blue-eyed soul sister (hazel in her case); a naturally gifted jazz and soul singer/songwriter. This was no duplicitous game; no #askRachel appropriation here. She was down, she was tragic, she was brilliant and we loved her.

My old friend Mike Sargent (film reviewer for Arise TV) took me to see the critics’ premier of Amy this past week. (OK, I threatened to break his legs if he didn’t.) I’ve been to many premiers, but never a critics’ premier. The packed theater was dead silent. No talking at the screen, no laughter, no head-nodding to the iconic jams, no texting–basically the polar opposite of a Times Square theater. Stoic. Focus. On. Screen. Even as I wiped my eyes, I wondered was I the only one who felt moved, who never tired of Amy’s music, who felt that aching loss all over again? Even at the end there was only a tiny ripple of applause then everyone ran out–and even then, no chatter about the film, yay or nay. WTF? It wasn’t til later Mike shared that’s how critics’ premiers are; everyone keeps their feelings and cards close to their chest. That ripple of applause was extremely rare; the journalist behind us openly crying–never happens.

All this to say, just go. Even if you didn’t really dig her (and you can skip along right now if that’s the case), you will be moved by this film and understand why her death was such a tragic loss to to music. If you need a review of the film here’s a good one by Joe Coscarelli for The NY Times.

Just see it.

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