|Die Frankfurt-Tipp Bewertung:|
|Originaltitel:||Get On Up|
|Genre:||Drama, Music movie|
|Laufzeit:||Ca. 138 min.|
|FSK:||From 12 years|
He was the "Godfather of Soul", who not only became immortal himself through his music, but also had a lasting influence on the entire music business. To this day he is one of the most sampled musicians of all time. Of course we are talking about James Brown, the "The Help" director Tate Taylor has now set a cinematic monument with the biopic "Get On Up". Jumping back and forth between different decades, Taylor tells of Brown's (Chadwick Boseman) difficult childhood and youth, an early prison stay and his first encounter with the gospel singer Bobby Byrd (Nelsan Ellis, "True Blood"), whose vocal troupe he joins - the beginning of a deep friendship and a musical world career. The most important stations in this career, such as James Brown's historic appearances in Vietnam or after the murder of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., must of course not be missed, as well as the birth of world hits like "I feel good" or "Sex Machine".
"Get On Up" strictly follows the rules of the genre from the first minute on. Those who have seen other biopics like "Walk the Line" or "Ray" will clearly recognize the formula according to which these films are knitted. So the cinematic treatise on Brown's life, as exciting as it may have been, doesn't really offer much new. The artist's dark sides, such as drug abuse and violence against his wife, are only hinted at. Although Brown is no longer the popular figure in the last act, which he may still be at the beginning. Still, Taylor doesn't dare to really differentiate the character. Chadwick Boseman, who had already impressively embodied a famous personality in the baseball drama "42", can largely compensate for this weakness with his strong playing. Nevertheless, at the end there remains the feeling that the man and artist James Brown has been more multi-layered than this film shows.
Beyond that "Get On Up" is a really good biopic with all the associated strengths and weaknesses. Without a doubt, the movie's strengths include the very good actors, the harmonious set and of course the great music, which immediately gets you into your legs and makes it almost impossible to sit still in the cinema chair at some moments. One of the weaknesses is that some parts of the biography are of course tightened up and treated superficially or even omitted completely due to lack of time. But since Taylor has a harmonious tempo overall and cleverly avoids unnecessary lengths, this shortcoming, over which many a biopic has stumbled, only has a slightly negative impact.
With a not always harmonious mixture of humor and dark drama, stirring musical interludes and rousing camera work, "Get On Up" manages to leave a thoroughly positive overall impression. You don't have to be a fan of James Brown to be entertained here, but if you really love the music of the "Godfather of Soul", you will of course get your money's worth and see what an outstanding performance Chadwick Boseman delivers. Therefore, the general rule is: not a great masterpiece, but a monument worthy of a great artist. Absolutely worth seeing, with small concessions!
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