“You’re wonderin’ now, what to do, now you know this is the end
You’re wonderin’ how, you will pay, for the way you misbehaved”
– a line from a song of Amy Winehouse.
I was going to church earlier and I thought of after hearing some worship songs, I kinda want to listen again to Amy’s songs all of the sudden. Why all of the sudden? It’s simply because of this epic music documentary. First song I heard from my random play list of Amy’s songs, Addicted. Good song before going to church.. =)
Anyway, last night.. After 2 hours of sheer watching this documentary, I kind of teary eyed because of simply, what happened to Amy. I can’t believe that all of her time creating songs, the 2 great albums, she has been battling all sorts of demons and struggles. It’s a totally unexpected truth shown in this doc about her. I’m shocked, and have more pity to her about what happened and of course, most important thing, the source of her music.. It’s mostly on how she deals in her life.
Hmmmm, the only minor flaw I can think of in this documentary was no person, I mean not one scene showing that there was an interview face to face to a person closes to her. Although the style used here was kinda effective and unconventional, I hope at least there was a scene that the director had one on one interview with the people closest to Amy. But like I said, it’s a minor flaw and did not really bother me in the whole experience watching this magnificent documentary.
Damn, there were a lot of music documentaries shown, even the Nina Simone’s one was kinda great.. But this one, it kinda left a mark on me. First thing why this one I consider a classic. Yes, the unconventional style used in this documentary. Regular or usual style of documentaries were kinda, show scenes of the interviewer and the one who is answering questions, whether it’s shown or blurred. Then one question, and the other party answers elaborately then that’s it.
Here, none of that happens, although they were but stocked footages and exclusive ones. It’s like a montage or abstract style of collecting those answers thru telephone or voice interviews and just synching the pictures or events showing of Amy’s life. What an effective way to do documentaries! I hope other directors can follow or at least try it.. Not only for music topics or themes but also in other issues like politics or other themes. Great style and I loved it, and it kept me going and no dull moments.
Another thing, at last, one of the few music documentaries shown how the artist make or create the music. I don’t know how the director got these very exclusive footages and material, but damn.. From Frank, to Back to black and the last recording of Tony Bennett, it’s all there, although not all songs shown there how she thought of it but the process itself.. It gave a glimpse how she works and the talent she really has. I mean, I can’t believe how fast she can think of lyrics while nursing a heart break. Or how about when she was high, still performs that great. I mean, just amazed me how she works and sticks to her principles especially on what she wants to be as an artist.
Third factor, yes, a lot of not only interesting facts showing here but also the whole life of Amy was shown here. I said that because of the dialogues or answers straight from the people close to her. All the people close to her had really a part of her life, like the ex manager, her last manager, then all Amy’s past exes, family especially her father.. Then, other artists who first discovered her and some of the important band mates she had. The producers as well like Mark Ronson but he had only a short time in this film. I don’t know why.. Even her closest friends with some acquaitances gave the best descriptions.. Don’t forget yes, Amy herself gave her answers, unfiltered plus surprising thoughts from her. I was shocked especially her views of living alone in her flat since at age 13 which she was right. hahaha
Last part which I really loved and give this credit to the director and the editor and the whole team, the mood of this film. It has depth and it struck my heart, it’s like watching the Taxi of the Dark Side or Gasland.. They were able to have the emotions of Amy reached the viewer. Here how it went, first part of the documentary, it was all fun, crazy and greatness until that Grammy winning scene.. But when the part start showing how Amy was on the verge of self destruction, I was devastated as well. I was shocked to see that at that time, it’s like she knew the day will come to end for her. I don’t want to spoil what was that scene, but it’s easy to identify it once you see this film. I had mixed emotions like scared, pity and sad. That goes on until to her very untimely demise.. One great example, was her last concert appearance in Serbia which she did not do anything and refused to perform.. That scene, I know it’s like a waste but you’ll see why she did not do it.
After the film and of course, no question about the OST, they used some unreleased songs and raw recordings which were great, I understand now why Amy Winehouse acted like that. Like one of her songs, Help Yourself, she simply did not help herself despite everybody around her done their best to save her. Unfortunately, she had a lot health and emotional issues carrying inside her. Then, add that pressure from the public who wants more of her, or I mean like that enigma they want to see or hear more from her which she doesn’t want. That’s right, one great fact in this film you’ll know that she doesn’t want popularity that much. Of course, she wants to earn but the reason she wants to do music was really to show all of her with that very innate strong vocal voice. Until her end, she is still thinking what songs to do or what lyrics or style to do even she was uncontrollable. What struck me the most of all she said in the this film was the last one.. It’s like she will exchange everthing just to walk normally outside of her home, she would do it. She just want a normal life and of course, have famous songs in her name. She most focus really in her music, like for instance in that last great recording with Tony Bennett.. I mean that scene, Tony said what they did at the first take was perfect, but Amy said, no, I kinda slipped and want to do it again.. Tony was shocked and yes, after that was the one shown in her music video with Tony. Wow, that’s how great she is. Very passionate in her art and everybody really adored for that, not that weird bee hive or tatooes in her body or even the addictions..
It’s really the music she did. I mean, the first I heard of her, I was shocked that she looks like that! My vision of her was a very strong black woman.. But no, she looks like a rock gooddess with that very jazzy and soulful voice.
Of all the modern artist of today, she stood out for me because of not only her looks but also the music itself. I mean, despite making only 2 albums… Those were instant classics and indeed, special ones. That’s why I have a special playlist under her name in my music player app.. In those two albums, she had songs in all types, pop, some what reggae and ska, rock, dance and yes, some jazz and ballads.. Other artists will take like many albums to be versatile in those genres.. For her, it only took 2 albums. =)
She’s a legend indeed. Yeah, same level with Nina perhaps. I know many will disagree but for me, that’s how good she is. Making jazz and her distinct voice mixed with her emotions and at the same time.. All those struggles turned into a great music.
Despite what happened to her and after watching this documentary.. I appreciate her music more than ever. I encourage not only for her fans but any music lover or even those who don’t know her..
Give Amy a shot and surely, you’ll love her.. =)