What Happened, Miss Simone?

2015

Biography / Documentary / Music

18
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 85%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 87%
IMDb Rating 7.6 10 9178

Synopsis


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
Downloaded 1,616 times
September 03, 2016 at 09:57 PM

Director

Cast

Sammy Davis Jr. as Himself
Hugh M. Hefner as Himself
Harry Belafonte as Himself
Walter Cronkite as Himself
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
752.46 MB
1280*912
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 41 min
P/S 1 / 11
1.55 GB
1504*1072
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 41 min
P/S 1 / 4

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by tjoceans 10 / 10

The Director Has Surely Taken The Easy Way Out!

Why wait till the end of the movie to finally suggest that the reason why Nina Simone was unhappy was because she was bipolar, then maybe we can follow through the entire movie knowing that we're just looking at a crazy woman! I'm confused is she the one to blame for the beatings she took from her husband, for living in a time of racism where it was not even permitted to discuss trauma, for being turned down to go to a school because she was African-American; only to be acknowledged after her death,for her political involvement with civil rights movement, which has always been considered taboo, for being poor, for living in fear of a lynching, for not being permitted to be a mother - just for living in fear! Hey! While you're at it, you can just write her out of the movie all together and just say this is how you become bipolar! This is what happens to women when they are given too much responsibility! We love that story! She can't take care of herself. As long as the men took care of the bills, she couldn't possibly understand the bills. Even in her final moments, she is not heard. It all falls on deaf ears Nina! They're not listening! They can't hear you! They gave you the pills so you could just keep playing! It's three strikes and you're out - African-American, woman, mental illness! I can't imagine a place anywhere and in anytime that a woman like this was not spotted on the street and cared for? Was that the state of mind during the civil rights movement? Can you answer me that question? You are telling me not one person, not a friend,family, or fan came to take care of her? I mean manic-depression has been around quite a long time! Centuries! There has always been people who have it and have been around to treat it. It didn't just happen in the last ten years! I'm sick of the big finale of bipolarism/mental illness! Why not do what has always been done when a writer/director doesn't know how to end a story - just staple a deuce ex machine to it and call it a day! Perfect rags to riches story, hey? Why even mention a mental illness? So those of us who suffer can say, well that's why we'll never be an important part of society! Or those of us who don't suffer as much can button it with, oh thank heavens she got help! Maybe a better ending might be triumphant? The husband is put in jail, finally justice served! By the way, since we are airing out the dirty laundry, what about the husband? What was his mental illness diagnosis? That he was a man and times were different? He gets a pass? The daughter? Anyone with the correct information knows that it runs in the family. How about tieing things up with a prompting of intolerance? Or don't women, African-American and those suffering with mental illness deserve some tolerance? And don't think I didn't miss that you are quick to label an abused woman as bipolar, which is why I asked the question at the beginning. Isn't this what the movie was about? Creating more intolerance! That is why they smacked the mental illness label onto Nina and the ending of the movie: so we could all feel like we were in the same company with the intolerant, nice and cosy. It is a mirror of our intolerance. It's just an easier explanation than and less taboo to just say she lost her fame because of bipolarism and easier to diagnose as she is a woman. Whatever, bravo to the director for an ignorant message! I loved seeing the original footage, but the the director should be cremated! Nina you're not alone. You were never alone. We women are all still dieing silently - African-American, or pathetically diagnosed with a mental illness - for all our tries.

Reviewed by Jackson Booth-Millard 7 / 10

What Happened, Miss Simone?

I make it my mission every year to try and watch as many, if not all, of the films nominated in all categories at the Oscars, so it was no surprise that I would watch this documentary film nominated, and the subject of it was going to be interesting as well. Nina Simone, real name Eunice Kathleen Waymon, was born 21 February 1933, this film depicts the life of the American singer-songwriter and civil rights activist, charting her rise to fame, and her hardships during her stardom. During her childhood Nina became a classically trained pianist, and eventually got her break, using a new name, to disguise her identity from her family. Nina made an early appearance alongside Hugh Hefner for a Playboy television show, and rose to fame with her various stage and television appearances, with a broad range of music styles, including classical, jazz, blues, folk, R&B, gospel and pop. During the 1960s however, black people faced prejudice, Nina was a great supporter of the work of activist Martin Luther King, until he was murdered. Nina incorporated her own messages for civil rights into the lyrics of her songs, but this meant many were not played on radio, but she picked herself back up. Nina was known for her temper and frequent outbursts, sometimes occurring during her performances, and she had to struggle not just with racism, but domestic abuse and political turmoil. Eventually, at the height of her fame, Nina decided to walk away from her family, country, career and fans, to move to Liberia and give up performing, she did however return for one last performance many years later. Nina Simone published her autobiography, I Put a Spell on You, in 1992, recorded her last album the same year, she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in the late 1980s, but died in her sleep on 21 April 2003, after suffering from breast cancer. With contributions by Lisa Simone Kelly, Nina's daughter; civil rights activist and comedian Dick Gregory, Stanley Crouch, Al Schackman, Ambassador Attallah Shabazz and Ilyasah Shabazz. Featuring her most famous songs, including "I Loves You, Porgy", "I Put a Spell on You", "Ain't Got No, I Got Life" (from the Muller advert) and "My Baby Just Cares for Me". Made up of autobiographical tapes, archive footage of news with Walter Cronkite, references to Martin Luther King and Malcolm X, and interviews by those who knew her best, this is a fascinating (in both good and bad ways) story of one of the most famous African-American singers, it makes you realise she was not just a great artist but a troubled soul, a most watchable biographical music documentary. It was nominated the Oscar for Best Documentary. Very good!

Reviewed by kijii 10 / 10

"To be Young Gifted and Black"

If you have Netflix streaming, you really should see this fascinating documentary!! Though I lived through the 50s and 60s, I don't remember Nina Simone (born in 1933 in North Carolina as Eunice Waymon) except in a very obscure way: an expatriated American icon of some sort. Yet, she had unbelievable talents that broke all boundaries of instrumental and vocal performing.

From childhood, she was trained in classical piano and was ready to become the first Black Woman to perform in Carnegie Hall. However, due to her life circumstances, she became something else. She became someone with totally unique abilities—abilities and feelings that transcended all types of music, poetry, and social activism. Yet, she had a very tragic life that is a story in itself.

I have never seen a documentary that so perfectly captures a life of a very complicated person as well as this one did!! What's equally amazing is that there were so many video clips available (from so many different venues and over so much time) to use in putting this story personal story together.

How does one talk about Nina Simone and her life? How do you classify her music or performing skills? Is it classical piano—gospel—jazz—soul— folk—social activism —poetry—or what? She wrote many songs that only she could written: she was the first black American to really express, in music, what so many people could only express in words (Malcolm X, James Baldwin), plays (Lorraine Hansberry) or poetry (Langston Hughes). And--as a black WOMAN--she expressed the anger that black men could not hope to at the time as in "Mississippi Goddam."

Her songs are also about freedom as well as her search to find her black identity as in "To be Young Gifted and Black" (inspired by Loranie Hansberry's play).

I'm convinced that the only way—or at least the best way--to BEGIN to understand Nina Simone is through this great documentary that follows her life from her childhood to death in the south of France!! Both her daughter and her former husband are narrators of the documentary, which gives us even more insight into her struggles.

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