First of all, Amy Winehouse was probably the most explosive jazz vocalist to emerge in 20 years. Secondly, her tragically short career was maybe the most dramatic celebrity meltdown to play out in the public eye (and there have been no shortage of them in the internet age); a tale of parental neglect fuelling binge drinking, bulimia, bad men, and an extraordinary talent. On top of all that there was the industry; the media; the money…
Director Asif Kapadia reinvented documentary filmmaking with Senna, cutting out the talking heads in favour of you-are-there footage. His second post-humous portrait is if anything even more remarkable for the sheer extent and intimacy of the footage he has uncovered. Winehouse was someone people wanted to film from her teenage years, sometimes in formal settings, often casually, the way that young people have come to regard as second nature: self documentation as public display. Kapadia sifts this voluminous material and emerges with a compassionate and insightful film about a fun young woman, an electrifying performer, and the terrible loneliness of a damaged life lived in the public eye.
Academy Award Nominee: Best Documentary
Ä sensitive, superbly constructed, ultimately shattering documentary." Ann Hornaday, Washington Post
"It is an overwhelming story, and despite everyone knowing the ending, it is as gripping as a thriller: Kapadia has fashioned and shaped it with masterly flair." Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian
"It is the achievement of Amy, Asif Kapadia’s accomplished, quietly devastating documentary, that it makes the story of this troubled and troubling individual surprisingly one of a kind by allowing us to, in a sense, live her life along with her." Kenneth Turan, LA Times