Portraying Aretha Franklin, in RESPECT , Jennifer Hudson has set the stage for her next Oscar win. Not enough can be said of Hudson’s performance and haunting renditions of countless Franklin hit songs or her gut-wrenching acting technique as she takes us through Aretha’s life of heart-breaking love relationships, battles with depression, child abuse and alcohol addiction.
There was no “faking it” as RESPECT hit the big screen in this Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer / MGM production. Jennifer Hudson lights up the screen along with a cast of very talented real singers and actors including co-stars: Oscar Award-Winning actor, Forest Whitaker, Audra McDonald, Marlon Wayans, Marc Marrone, Tituss Burgess, and the very talented young phenom, Skye Dakota Turner who plays young Aretha Franklin.
In this latest biopic, Director, Liesl Tommy, along with writers Tracy Scott Wilson, and Callie Khouri, do an excellent job of bringing to life the legendary Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin’s life on film. Beginning in 1952, they transport us back to the early roots of Franklin’s beginnings as a child in the black gospel Baptist Church where we meet the young Franklin (Skye Dakota Turner) who lights up her father’s Saturday night parties as well as Sunday church congregation meetings with her singing.
It is during these early years, we get to see the beginnings of Franklin including her early life struggles through child abuse as well as family violence. We also get to meet other notable characters in her early life including Ted White her future to be abusive husband, convincingly and remarkably played by Marlon Wayans who miraculously transforms himself into the character laying down a performance definitely worthy of Best Supporting Actor consideration.
Other remarkable performances include: Marc Marrone who played record producer and executive Jerry Wexler as well as Titus Burgess as the Reverend, Dr. James Cleveland, Mary J. Blige who plays a powerful Dinah Washington, Audra McDowell as Barbara Franklin and Albert Jones as Ken Cunningham.
RESPECT is a movie definitely worth seeing. It is well-made film that will make for countless years of musical entertainment enjoyment for all. It is highly recommended by www. ComedyE.com
Written by: DeAlan Wilson