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An in-depth look at the life and music of Whitney Houston.


Kevin Macdonald


Kevin Macdonald
4,963 ( 918)
1 win & 10 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Whitney Houston ... Herself (archive footage)
Ellen White Ellen White ... Herself - Family Friend / Employee (as 'Aunt Bae')
Michael Houston Michael Houston ... Himself - Brother / Employee
Cissy Houston ... Herself - Mother
Aretha Franklin ... Herself (archive footage)
Gary Houston ... Himself - Brother / Backup Singer (as Gary Garland-Houston)
Donna Houston Donna Houston ... Herself - Former Sister-in-Law
Kenneth Gibson Kenneth Gibson ... Himself - First Black Mayor of Newark (archive footage) (as Ken Gibson)
Deforest B. Soaries Jr. Deforest B. Soaries Jr. ... Himself - Family Friend (as Reverend Deforest Soaries)
Drinkard Singers Drinkard Singers ... Themselves (archive footage)
Dionne Warwick ... Herself - Whitney's Cousin (archive footage)
Dee Dee Warwick Dee Dee Warwick ... Herself - Whitney's Cousin (archive footage)
Keith Kelly Keith Kelly ... Himself - Family Friend / Employee
John Houston III John Houston III ... Himself - Half-Brother
Patricia Houston ... Herself - Sister-in-Law / Manager 2000-2012 (as Pat Houston)


An in-depth look at the life and music of Whitney Houston.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


All the music. All the stories. All the answers. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and drug content | See all certifications »


Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site | See more »





Release Date:

5 July 2018 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Whitney See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,274,051, 8 July 2018, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$3,026,351, 20 September 2018
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


It was screened out of competition at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival. See more »


[first lines]
Whitney Houston: There were times when I would look up to God and I'd go, "Why is this happening to me?" And then these dreams... I'd have these dreams about being on a bridge and the bridge going back and forth and swaying. There's a big storm coming... I'm always running from this giant. I'm always running from this big man. I know I can make it. I know I can make it. I know I can make it. My mother always says, "Oh, you know, that's nothin' but the devil; he's just trying to get you. He just ...
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Things That Make You Go Hmm
Performed by Robyn Crawford
Written by Robert Clivillés, Freedom Williams (as Frederick Williams)
Published by Spirit Music Publishing Limited o/b/o Spirit Services Holdings, S.A.R.L. and RBG Dome Music, WB Music Corp. (ASCAP)
All rights on behalf of WB Music Corp. administered by Warner/Chappell Music North America Ltd
Courtesy of Nippy Inc.
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User Reviews

Whitney chronicles the early success and eventual downfall of one of the greatest singers of all time.
10 July 2018 | by TheMovieDioramaSee all my reviews

Whitney Houston. Everyone and their dog has heard of a song by this enigmatic lass. The only artist to garner seven consecutive US number one singles and release the best selling single for a female artist of all time. She has broken more records than a lunatic swinging a bat at a jukebox. Yet, with such early fame, her later life was marred with scandals, tainted by drug accessibility and succumbed to an inevitable tragedy. Macdonald's documentary depicts the chaotic world that stardom introduces whilst also retaining a sense of family. Interviews with family members, close friends and colleagues allows a personable quality to shine through this deeply tragic documentary. Tackling broad subject matters of racial segregation and activism during the 80s, the impact of recreational drug usage and never before seen allegations of sexual abuse at a young age. Suffice to say, Houston suffered personal struggles and this film primarily hones in on her downfall. Still retaining her angelic persona, the documentary insinuates that it was her external environment that corrupted her. Similarly to Kapadia's documentary 'Amy', it portrays fame as a disease where young stars are more susceptible to its negativity. The relentless second half drains you on an emotional level as you empathically watch this beautiful talent degrade, especially the phone recording of her 'Nothing But Love' comeback tour. It's not all doom and gloom, the first third does feel hearty and establishes a blossoming strong family bond as we nostalgically glance back at various high points in her short life. 'The Bodyguard', her interpretation of "The Star Spangled Banner" and her numerous number one singles. Alas, you can't help but feel that this overstuffed documentary focuses too much on her ruination. Contaminating a beautiful soul. It's an eye-opening perspective for fans and fledglings (I was the latter) that both informs and occasionally succumbs to emotional exploitation. Powerfully charged nonetheless.

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