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Bessie (2015)

TV-MA | | Biography, Drama, Music | TV Movie 16 May 2015
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The story of legendary blues performer Bessie Smith, who rose to fame during the 1920s and '30s.

Director:

Dee Rees

Writers:

Dee Rees (screenplay), Christopher Cleveland (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 23 wins & 45 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Michael Kenneth Williams ... Jack Gee
Tika Sumpter ... Lucille
Queen Latifah ... Bessie Smith
Bryan Greenberg ... John Hammond
Oliver Platt ... Carl Van Vechten
Khandi Alexander ... Viola
Mike Epps ... Richard
Charles S. Dutton ... William 'Pa' Rainey
Mo'Nique ... Ma Rainey
Tory Kittles ... Clarence
Jeremie Harris ... Langston Hughes
Alkoya Brunson ... Swarm Boy #2
Whitney Goin ... Fania Van Vechten
Terence Rosemore ... Detroit Theater Manager
Jessejames Locorriere ... Vanity Fair Editor
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Storyline

The story of legendary blues performer Bessie Smith, who rose to fame during the 1920s and '30s.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Queen brings Bessie back to life.

Genres:

Biography | Drama | Music

Certificate:

TV-MA | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 May 2015 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bessie See more »

Filming Locations:

Olde Town Conyers, Georgia, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Queen Latifah's topless scene in front of the mirror shows her real breasts. A body double was not used. See more »

Quotes

Bessie Smith: No yellow bitch in my show!
See more »


Soundtracks

Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
Written by Ma Rainey
Performed by Mo'Nique and Queen Latifah
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Acting/Production A+ But Just Disappointing
19 August 2015 | by davidallenwakefieldSee all my reviews

Great performances and cinematography but just disappointing it just did not capture me. That's no criticism of the performances they were great.....it just misses the mark.

Firstly make your own mind up but for me knowing a bit about her life story it seems to lack any emotion. There's a coldness to it, kind of this happened then this happened. In one scene where Bessie faces her sister it seems just flashed through. Considering the history between them it should have been a much more powerful moment. The movie does not draw the viewer in. In my opinion it lacks any depth.

I guess the script writing is what's wrong but am no expert it just misses the mark. Great performance by QL. Not something I would think about watching again.


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