Aretha Franklin “Amazing Grace” by Sidney Pollack

Movie recommendation: 2 years ago a documentary about Aretha Franklin, shot by Sidney Pollack from 1972 was released. I don’t know why it was not released in the 70s, but it was released beginning of this year in Switzerland.

I finally found it on AppleTV, not sure where else it’s on. It is not so much a documentary, as a shoot of a 2 day Gospel event in a church. And it is absolutely freaking amazing.

I always envied that community their approach to religion, German Christianity is very, very, very stiff and boring. Quote from the reverend: “I’d like for you to be mindful, though, that this is a church, and we’re here for a religious service. And we want you to be a part of it; we want you to give vent to the Spirit. And those of you who are not hip to giving vent to the Spirit, then you do the next best thing.”

This is worth watching for a few reasons:

  • It’s a time capsule, showing you part of that community in the 70s.
  • It’s a concert, where on the first day, the church is let’s say 85% full. On the next day, Mick Jagger is the front row, and the room is packed.
  • It’s a concert film that is really well done in bringing this concert into your room.
  • It’s a concert movie that has the greatest singer of all time (per Rolling Stone’s magazin) at her prime. Her performance of amazing grace at the end of part one is just a step above everything else I have seen.
  • And, it’s the closest thing to a religious experience i have ever seen on my TV.

Highly recommended if you are into this theme.

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