‘I Wanna Dance With Somebody’ Review: Whitney Houston Biopic Has Tough Time Adapting Singer’s Life To Screen
21.12.2022 - 17:43
Directed by Kasi Lemmons, written by Anthony McCarten, Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance With Somebody is the new biopic on the singer’s life. Her history is full of dense material and naturally some things have to be left out for the sake of time, but 2.5 hours isn’t enough to do the story justice. The movie stars Naomi Ackie, Stanley Tucci, Nafessa Williams, and Ashton Sanders.
The film starts with Whitney (Naomi Ackie) singing in the church choir run by her mother Cissy (Tamara Tunie), who also has a small band she performs with where Whitney sings back up. While chilling in the park listening to music the young singer meets Robyn (Nafessa Williams), a young girl from her neighborhood who she befriends. A friend of the family brings Arista Records CEO Clive Davis (Stanley Tucci) to a show where Cissy is supposed to lead, but she pushes her daughter to sing The Greatest Love of All instead. That performance launched her career as she was soon signed to Arista Records as a recording artist.
Under the tutelage of Clive Davis, the wide-eyed young woman doesn’t know much about the industry, but wants to sing epic ballards, and starts her career singing pop songs. However, her parents are looking to make changes to her personality and image. Her father John Houston (Clarke Peters) is particularly controlling as her manager, and even suggests she be seen with more men to avoid suspicion that she and Robyn are a couple. All the people from Whitney’s past are now along for the ride as she meets Bobby Brown (played by Ashton Sanders), lands several number one hits, and becomes addicted to drugs.
The film chronicles her career from the 1980’s, through the 1990s, and up to her death. The plot bounces from scene to scene with no
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