6.9/10
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118 user 169 critic

Get on Up (2014)

PG-13 | | Biography, Drama, Music | 1 August 2014 (USA)
Trailer
2:39 | Trailer
A chronicle of James Brown's rise from extreme poverty to become one of the most influential musicians in history.

Director:

Tate Taylor

Writers:

Jez Butterworth (screenplay), John-Henry Butterworth (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
5 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Chadwick Boseman ... James Brown
Nelsan Ellis ... Bobby Byrd
Dan Aykroyd ... Ben Bart
Viola Davis ... Susie Brown
Lennie James ... Joe Brown
Fred Melamed ... Syd Nathan
Craig Robinson ... Maceo Parker
Jill Scott ... DeeDee Brown
Octavia Spencer ... Aunt Honey
Josh Hopkins ... Ralph Bass
Brandon Mychal Smith ... Little Richard (as Brandon Smith)
Tika Sumpter ... Yvonne Fair
Aunjanue Ellis ... Vicki Anderson
Tariq Trotter ... Pee Wee Ellis
Aloe Blacc ... Nafloyd Scott
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Storyline

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 (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Funk don't Quit

Genres:

Biography | Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for sexual content, drug use, some strong language, and violent situations | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ben Bart handcuffs a suitcase full of cash to Big Junior's wrist. As Elwood Blues, Dan Aykroyd walked on stage with a suitcase handcuffed to his wrist. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of 1965, Ben gives James a chauffeur-driven black 1967 Cadillac. See more »

Quotes

Susie Brown: My baby playing at the Apollo.
James Brown: I ain't your baby, not then, not now. I look after James Brown. You want to know me, I'll tell you. My daddy in the army. My mamma left. No one else helped me. No one else.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The movie's title is shown as neon lit text, hanging in a window during the opening scene. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Chadwick Boseman/Cardi B (2018) See more »

Soundtracks

Please, Please, Please (Live in Tampa)
Written by James Brown, Johnny Terry
Performed by James Brown
Courtesy of Republic Records
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

User Reviews

 
Great movie on the Godfather of Soul
27 May 2017 | by grantssSee all my reviews

A movie on the great James Brown, the Godfather of Soul and one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. We see his life, from boyhood, to initial steps as an entertainer, to success and later life.

Great biopic. Directed by Tate Taylor, who directed The Help, and starring Chadwick Boseman (who played Jackie Robinson in 42) as James Brown, this is an entertaining, absorbing look into the life of one of the greatest stars of the 20th century, a man who created a genre of music (funk) and influenced several others.

Excellent performance by Chadwick Boseman in the lead role. Very convincing, capturing incredibly well the energy, swagger and determination of James Brown, plus his on-stage theatrics.

The film's hairstylist and make-up artist deserve heaps of credit too, considering the (quite accurate) transformations they put Boseman through.

Part of what makes the movie so great is the music, and the live performances to go with it. Very well done.

Not perfect though. Starts pretty disjointedly and non-engagingly. Takes a while to get into the movie (but once you do it is a great journey). Even once it does get going, there is still a degree of roughness around the edges. Tate Taylor seems to paint with broad brushes, as the smaller detail sometimes seems overlooked or bent for dramatic purposes.

Comparisons with Ray and Walk The Line are in order, and Get On Up is not quite up to the standard of those two movies, largely for the reasons mentioned above.

This all said, a great movie.


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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site | See more »

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 August 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Get on Up See more »

Filming Locations:

Natchez, Mississippi, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$13,585,915, 3 August 2014

Gross USA:

$30,703,100

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$33,448,971
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Datasat | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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