Initially this was just meant to be a 2-6 liner Facebook post but alas my fingers doth persist.
I fell in love with Jill Scott and “the funk” after watching Get on UP, Tate Taylor does a masterful job of directing the cast and I hope Chadwick Boseman is highly credited for his artistic and truthful performance in this chronicle journey of James Brownin next year’s Oscar nominations. This film is not just the kind of film that influences your current playlist but also the kind of movie that allows audiences to fall in love with an iconic figure. The audience gets to travel from his impoverished childhood to his evolution into the God father of Soul.
Almost two years ago I ventured on my own journey to New York to start my acting career, more recently (a month ago) I moved to Harlem. My journey from Muscat to Malaysia to Manhattan’s Harlem is not a very short tale but, my journey from my new apartment to Magic Johnson Harlem 9 Theatre can be summed up in a couple of words. It all brings me to my destination of the here and now.
The end of the film presents a picture of the Apollo in 2006, celebrating the legendary life of James Brown, I had just walked past that venue before arriving at the theatre and was watching the film a right round the corner from the Apollo, this not only gave me chills but also inspired my inner artist to embrace my surroundings. Which leads me to discuss the importance of artists “closing the gap”. By this I mean, as an artist sometimes our career needs to be nurtured in certain environments that appreciate, support and value our craft. Having said that, I feel this film may not have been as powerful or potent had the backdrop of my life been different.
Bose Chadwick, who plays James Brown was accompanied by by Jill Scott, Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer, Nelsan Ellis, Lennie James, Dan Aykroyd and Tika Sumpter. Although they all brilliantly contributed to the life of Get On Up, I couldn’t help but be mesmerized by DeeDee Jenkins, played by Jill Scott. I don’t think it was so much her role on screen, but rather her confidence in owning her character’s spirit that in turn allowed her own appeal to blossom. As women continue to make an impression on the 21st century, I can’t help but notice that sometimes and in many cases we are still limited and held captive in terms of our “standard of beauty”.
It’s not often that I get to see a curvy black woman embrace her sexuality on screen, and as I turn over a new leaf having recently turned 26, I’m learning to accept myself not only in terms of my body image but also in my professional life, watching Miss Scott that day, I felt, gave me the permission to embrace myself as a curvy black goddess (yess huni! I’m owning it) performer and content creator – ever since I’ve been posting a number of (soul gratifying yet) unwarranted posts of Jill Scott on my timeline to prove my absolute adoration of her.
If Get on Up did not entirely capture the depth of Brown’s live performances, that’s because a typical Brown concert lasted longer than the actual film and left the audience drenched in sweat. I highly recommend the film and as I afore mentioned, I fell in love with the funk and the amazing Jill Scott . Who knows you just might fall in love with something that Get on Up has to offer ?