I was not impressed by this film's portrayal of Nina's life, her music and her importance in history.
Nina Simone was a huge public figure in the black civil rights movement and one of the most popular jazz musicians of all time. She remains to this day very influential and unique. This film managed to capture none of it. It decides to focus entirely on her romantic relationship with her assistant during the last years of her life and - even though it does address her mental health issues and her problems with showbiz - it briefly skims over all the good and important influence she had over culture and music. Zoe Saldana may have been able to pull off her demeanour while in daily life, however her 'on stage' performances were underwhelming. I don't have a problem with her doing her own singing while impersonation an actual person, because a voice-over would probably not have worked well, however, Zoe's auto-tuned performance failed to capture the spirituality, strength and powerful presence that Nina had. Obviously, no one can be as good a Nina as Nina was, but if I didn't know who Nina Simone was before this movie, I certainly would not have cared about her afterwards. Overall, I was not impressed by this film's portrayal of Nina's life, her music and her importance in history. If you want a better portrayal of Nina, watch What Happened, Miss Simone (her documentary) or listen to her actual music.
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