In a role Jennifer Hudson was probably born to play. She effortlessly channels The Queen of Soul. Unfortunately, Biopics always use a little too much artistic license to tell their story. Case in point Bohemian Rhapsody and Get On Up. In both films the real facts are bent and twisted to fit the narrative.
It’s not as bad in Respect, but a number of key elements that exemplified Aretha Franklin as a human being, were not included. Her incredible talent and career can’t be encapsulated into a 2 & 1/2 hour film.
Having been a big fan of Aretha and her music for so long made it easy to separate fact from fiction, which presented the biggest problem for me.
I’m sure that the Respect soundtrack will be popular with fans because of Jennifer Hudson’s Oscar winning performance in Dreamgirls. Unexpectedly though, I found myself comparing both films as Respect began to drag on. This was not my intent going in. It just became ‘Aretha’ overkill, trying to make a point about something, which I couldn’t decipher.
Lots of talent in this movie, but I came away wishing it was a documentary featuring the ‘REAL’ Aretha Franklin. Some artists are just larger than life, even the multi-talented Jennifer Hudson will always pale in comparison.
Dreamgirls has staying power and will never get old. It was Jennifer Hudson’s History defining moment. Respect – Not So Much.