R&A 14: Jimi: All Is by My Side

1 h 57 min  |  Love&Anarchy  |  Release Date: 18.9.2014

No one - not whites, blacks, nor space brothers - can hear Jimi in writer/director John Ridley's restless film about the mercurial rock guitarist. The Hendrix estate was not consulted, so his songs remain locked in the vault. In their place are montage and feedback, cross-dialogue, distortion and the odd cover version (Muddy Waters, Dylan, the Beatles). The result (...) delivers a Jimi Hendrix experience somehow the richer for sidelining the man and subverting his music.

Hendrix (an impeccable impression by André Benjamin) is pursued by two women who – through a mixture of love, persistence and straight-up bullying –helped Jimi break the UK. Linda Keith (Imogen Poots) was a sometime model, who tired of being just Keith Richards' girlfriend. She would spot Hendrix playing in New York's Cheetah bar, introduce him to acid, and eventually hook him up with Chas Chandler (Andrew Buckley) – the former Animals bassist who would become the Experience's manager. Hayley Atwell plays Kathy Etchingham, the long-term girlfriend whose part in their tempestuous relationship provided inspiration for several Hendrix classics.

Ridley, who also wrote the [Oscar-winning] screenplay for 12 Years a Slave, takes pleasure in amplifying this idea of Hendrix as enigma.

Henry Barnes, The Guardian

Language: English / Subtitles: -


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