Critic Reviews



Based on 25 critic reviews provided by
Neville unearths a treasure trove of archival TV, concert and film footage featuring many of these vocalists in their heyday, balancing the material with perfectly-lit contemporary studio interviews and performances shot in pristine digital cinematography, supplemented by more informal scenes depicting the frequent challenges of these musicians' careers.
Sometimes it's racism; sometimes bum luck; sometimes it's producer Phil Spector putting Love's voice in another singer's mouth. You watch. You hear the gospel spoken in the voices of these women. And you marvel.
A well-polished production with a remarkable soundtrack.
Twenty Feet From Stardom touches on fascinating issues, but too often it does no more than that.
For most of its running time, this personality-packed docu is nothing short of absorbing as it recaps the essential role African-American background singers played in shaping the sound of 20th-century pop music.
Time Out
The sisterhood who have made this an art form mostly remain unsung heroes, as it were, of the hit parade. Their collective bow is long overdue.
Village Voice
It does what the most powerful films and music have always done, which is to spark contemplation of our own lives and choices, and our place in the world, while also stoking compassion and empathy for lives far removed from our own.
Slant Magazine
This joyous documentary leaves us wanting to immediately seek out the incredible, sometimes unfamiliar music we've just heard.
It’s still a welcome, entertaining and overdue delivery of credit where credit was and is due.
You gasp at the ecstatic convergence of lung power and spirit.

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