arrives in Halifax on the heels of Amy Berg’s Netflix doc What
Happened, Miss Simone?
, an overview of the life of Nina Simone. Like
Simone, Amy Winehouse was manipulated, robbed and ruined by the man
she loved, one Blake Fielder-Civil, who brought her heroin in rehab
and lives on while she expired as an international joke. Simone lived
longer and died with more dignity, but the lesson of both films is
clear: Don’t fall in love with a shitty man. And, if you can help
it—as Winehouse could not—don’t be born to a shit, either. Asif
) has constructed a remarkable documentary that plays
like a home movie—with no talking heads, just audio over intimate
archival footage—starting when Winehouse was a teen and ending with
her body being wheeled away after her drug-induced death at 27.
Winehouse’s potential—especially vocally, but also lyrically and as a
human—is so apparent from minute one that it casts a pall over this
story you already know the end of. Watching her record the
transcendent vocals for "Back to Black" in a surprisingly scrubby studio
is as thrilling as it is devastating. The less said about the men—her
husband and her father—who helped kill her, the better. Amy
is a tough
watch, but you must.