Netflix original Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom is bound to throw
you in a blue funk, as it’s Chadwick Boseman’s last movie! He died when the
movie was in the post-production stage, and his extraordinary performance may
be the finest till date, and worthy of an
Oscar nomination or certainly a
Chadwick Boseman’s death should change the way we look at sick people!
Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom movie is an explosion of pure
acting firepower from both Voila Davis and Chadwick Boseman, who co-pronounced
the adaption of August Wilson’s 1984 stage play, based on the life of legendary
‘Mother of the Blues,’ Ma Rainey. The movie is definitely a career breakthrough
for Davis and a perfect swan song for Boseman, who was at the height of his
career, and left this world far too soon.
Rainey’s Black Bottom- Stream it or Skip It?
Also check out Sweet Home’s trailer!
Produced by Denzel Washington and directed by George C.
Wolfe, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom is a portrayal of pain and passion, sets in the
1920s, but still loudly resonates in the 2020’s. It connotes the racial
injustice within the institution that exploits Ma and brutally damages an
ambitious trumpeter, Levee (played by Boseman).
Here’s 4 reasons why this movie will make you cry!
On one hot day in a White-owned Chicago studio, we see Black
musicians waiting for the arrival of legendary blues singer “Ma” Rainey along
with her band so they can record an album. ‘Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom is a lead
track that is expected to be her significant hit, but a passionate trumpeter is
hell-bent to record his own version. The rising tension around this song
creates the foundation of a rebelliousness against power, sex (here’s the leaked sex scenes of Cyberpunk 2077 on PornHub), and race.
Performance: Voila Davis’s Ma is tough, wise, and pessimistic.
Her sense of diva prerogative gets her what she wants but it certainly doesn’t come
Chadwick Boseman gives an inspirational performance as the
determined yet insecure trumpeter Levee who—tormented by a childhood experience
of racial discrimination and violence—still dreams to stake his own claim to
the music industry. This is Boseman’s final performance on the screen, and what
a magnificent way to drop down the curtain one final time.
Levee produces a creative new version of Black Bottom, quite
without Ma’s permission. His version of the track downplays Ma’s soft, sad, and
bluesy vocals and sounds a more promising composition from the male members in
the band: Slow Drag (Micheal Potts), Toledo (Glynn Turman), Cutler (Colman
Domingo) and Levee with his shiny trumpet. Levee’s passion to begin his own
band has him persuading White managers and studio producers, forcing him to
re-experience his childhood traumas.
Ma, obviously, disapproves Levee’s version of Black Bottom,
believing that he’s using her charisma and prestige as a launching rack to
start his own career. The conflict between Levee and Ma is because of Ma’s
teenage nephew Sylvester (Dusan Brown) who she desperately wants to introduce with
the upcoming track, regardless of the fact that he stutters. To fuel the fire,
she introduces her stunning girlfriend Dussie Mae (Taylour Paige), whom Levee
is dangerously attracted to.
While the power here mainly lies with Ma Rainey, as she is the
lead talent and the whole band is dependent on her, the band members are
slightly disappointed with Ma’s inability to connect with White audiences.
Here’s the most shocking moments of 2020!
On the other hand, Levee is equipped with innovative ideas
about music, but he needs support from the White-dominant management. Tragedy
and violence are sparked because of Levee’ boot-licking attitude towards the
managers and producers. This whole confrontation triggers Levee’s previous
memories of racist humiliation and violence, where he was forced to watch the
rape of his mother by a White men. He also recounts his near-death experience
when he tried to stop his mother’s rape.
dialogue: “I can smile and say, ‘Yes, sir’ to whoever I please. I got
my time coming to me. Y’all just leave Levee alone about the White man.” –
Levee (played by Boseman)
verdict: STREAM it! The moving aspects of Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
make it a worthy watch for sure! It offers an inspirational, intense and
intimate experience of art and its influence over the society, especially
against the backdrop of racism. Boseman’s incredible performance and
exceptional story-telling will definitely make you cry!
Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom started streaming on Netflix on 18th
December. Check out the trailer here:
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