On route to the stage, singer James Brown recalls a life with a turbulent childhood where music was his only constructive release for his passions. A chance demonstration of that in prison led to a new friend who helped get him out and into a musical career. With his fire and creative daring, Brown became a star who defiantly created new possibilities in show business both on and behind the stage in face of racism and conventional thinking. Along the way, James would also become a peacemaker who redefined and raised the African-American community's feeling of self-worth when it was needed most. However, those same domineering passions would lead James Brown alienating everyone around him as his appetites became ever more self-destructive. Only after he hit rock bottom with a serious mistake does Brown realize what he needs to do make his life as the Godfather of Soul truly worthwhile. Written by
Kenneth Chisholm (firstname.lastname@example.org)
James Brown learns that the Rolling Stones will close the TV show, not him. Ben Bart says the band will soon be forgotten. Fifty years later, The Stones are still performing together, and frontman Mick Jagger is this film's executive music producer and one of its main producers. See more »
At the beginning of 1965, Ben gives James a chauffeur-driven black 1967 Cadillac. See more »
You special. You mama's a no account fool, your daddy too, but you ain't going to be. You gonna be okay. One day, everybody going to know your name.
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Chadwick Boseman is James Brown as he recreates his evolution as a performer in exhaustive dimension and magnitude. The raw and charismatic excitement of Brown's presence are all here. This shows dedication and natural ability as Boseman reminds us of a heritage that music cannot deny and a story that needs to be told again and again as Brown's influence continues to mesmerize us when we hear him. The entire cast were soulful and talented. Viola Davis was very moving as Brown's mother who had abandoned him as a young child and we sense the deep sorrow and loss that Brown must have endured and helps us understand his determination and inner fire as he himself catches hold of his spiritual connection to source and allows his musical genius to take hold of him and us. The words and messages in the songs that Brown wrote may at times seem simplistic but true as he sings them with such knowing, a man who has experienced life in all its dimensions.
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