While I enjoyed Respect, I have to say the traditional biopic formula should be retired. First the start is always sluggish, when if they cut to highlights and then backtracked, you’d wind up with a much better film. Not to mention, you have one of the greatest current singers of all time playing a G.O.A.T. so for the love of Natural Woman, let her go.
Here’s how I would have script doctored the hell out of this: Start with the nanny asking her what’s wrong, cut to Daddy asking her to sing at parties, show the scene of creepo coming into bedroom, skip to drinking milk pregnant, cut to creepo asking her out and Daddeo telling him to get lost, cut to MLK and wanting to march, cut to her visiting her children, and then let it roll…at least that way, you’ve allowed the gymnast/filmgoer to get a running start at this.
But instead, I put on my wading boots and acted like I was watching a biopic from the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s.
Sad since you had a powerhouse team working on the writing, story by the gal who won an Oscar for writing Thelma and Louise (Callie Khouri)for goodness sakes and screenplay by the woman who worked on Fosse/Verdon and The Americans (Tracey Scott Wilson).
People easily entertained will love it. But after seeing Pig and Annette, I was hoping for a little more artistically minded film, especially with Jennifer Hudson who, like Aretha, can handle anything given to her. And bravo to Forest Whitaker, too, another strong actor who would have gone artsy in a heart beat and solidly landed.