6.9/10
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Get on Up (2014)

PG-13 | | Biography, Drama, Music | 1 August 2014 (USA)
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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 »
6 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »

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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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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:

$30,513,940
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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Did You Know?

Trivia

Just before James hits the stage on the T.A.M.I. show, there's a shot of two of the hosts, one dressed as a fire fighter, ready to introduce James and the Flames. It's actually footage from the 1964 broadcast of the T.A.M.I. show. The 2 people are Jan and Dean (Dead Man's Curve). See more »

Goofs

In the movie, James Brown is married twice. In real life, he had four different wives. 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 »

Connections

Featured in Honest Trailers: Black Panther (2018) See more »

Soundtracks

The Christmas Song
Written by Mel Tormé (as Mel Torme), Robert Wells
Performed by James Brown
Courtesy of Republic Records
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A So-So Biopic
9 August 2014 | by griffolyon12See all my reviews

The James Brown biopic, Get on Up, is an okay movie that paints enough of a picture to give those who don't know who James Brown was an idea of the man, but not enough to really satisfy or make this movie feel like it had to be made. The movie is constantly jumping back-and-forth in time, going from old James Brown, to little kid James Brown, to Sixties' James Brown, and then to teenage James Brown, back to kid James Brown again. It's a confusing plot device that I guess they used to try and tell the emotional story rather than a straightforward linear story, but it often detracts more than it adds. While a lot of the musical numbers are very lively, and there are some humorous scenes here and there, the movie itself feels disjointed and confused on what it really wants to be, rather than feeling like a window into the life of James Brown. The thing that saves this movie, for the most part, is the performance by Chadwick Boseman as James Brown. He gives it his all and should get an Oscar nom for his work.

I give Get on Up a 6 out of 10!


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