Being a fan of Amy Winehouse since I was a wide-eyed 8 year old listening to my mother blasting ‘F*** Me Pumps,’ I will always have a deep regret in me for not being old enough to attend at least one of her concerts. The closest I’ve gotten is sitting in a theater watching the horrific life that was behind the pain in her voice.
“Amy” delves into every bright and dark aspect of Ms. Winehouse’s life with family, friends, music and love that ultimately lead to substance abuse. It doesn’t just touch on certain aspects of her life either; instead, it covers each part of her life with such detail that you feel as though she was telling you her story.
The documentary provides a visual for each painstakingly honest song that Amy produced. From her early boyfriend being her “Lady-Boy” to her pop hit rebellion of “Rehab” and every song in between, her lyrics were brought to life before my eyes. The film is personal, leaving almost no unknown in the singer’s life (Other than what Amy and Raphael Saadiq would’ve sound like for an album’s worth of material). Her descent into the deepest, darkest pits of depression is put on display, as is a father who was looking to exploit his daughter for his own fame (“Are you only interested in me for what you can get out of me?” she’s caught asking him after he brought his own camera crew to a family vacation). We see her late husband Blake-Fielder Civil introducing her to crack cocaine and heroin, an addiction she battled due to the love she had for her husband. It also doesn’t leave Amy blameless for her own addictions.
This movie is especially heartbreaking and gut wrenching as it comes to an end, as you see her body deteriorate and her passion disappear. I believe Amy summed up her final years of life perfectly when asked about fame: “I don’t think I could handle it. I would probably go mad.”