(2014) (Chadwick Boseman, Nelsan Ellis) (PG-13)
- QUICK TAKE:
- Drama: A poor boy grows up into a hugely popular soul singer by perfecting both his music and handling the business side as well.
- It's 1939 and James Brown (JORDAN SCOTT) is a young boy growing up in the woods near Barnwell, South Carolina with his mom, Susie (VIOLA DAVIS), and dad, Joe (LENNIE JAMES), neither of which were cut out to be parents. Eventually dropped off to live in Augusta, Georgia with his Aunt Honey (OCTAVIA SPENCER) who runs a bordello there, James grows up hawking hookers and whiskey for visiting soldiers, all while watching a charismatic preacher do his thing elsewhere on the pulpit.
Years later and serving time in prison for stealing a suit, James (CHADWICK BOSEMAN) meets gospel singer Bobby Byrd (NELSAN ELLIS) who is impressed enough with James' singing ability that he convinces his family to take in the teenager and his band to bring James into their fold. It's not long before the band takes up livelier, secular music and changes its name to The Famous Flames and soon draws the interest of record promoter Ben Bart (DAN AYKROYD).
James ends up marrying Velma (JACINTE BLANKENSHIP) and starts a family, although with his growing success and workaholic demeanor, he eventually leaves her for Deedee (JILL SCOTT) who becomes his second wife. And while Bobby sticks with James through thick and thin, the rest of their band develops issues when James becomes the main star and treats everyone else like hired hands, all as he starts taking over the business side of his career.
- WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
- Those who are fans of James Brown, biopics about famous musicians/singers and/or who might be fans of anyone in the cast could show some interest in this film.
- WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
- For sexual content, drug use, some strong language, and violent situations.
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