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Film Series : Film Center from Your Sofa

Ella Fitzgerald: Just One of Those Things

2019, Leslie Woodhead, UK/USA, 90 min.


Plays In: Screen to Screen

“An exhilarating and superbly filmed rags to riches tale of the supreme voice of jazz. Eagle Rock has smashed it again.” Paul Davies -Daily Express

“A study of a much loved but little understood musical icon that was touching but also very funny. It was also great to see talking heads who actually knew what they weretalking about. I particularly loved Will Friedwald's analysis of her 1960 Berlin version of How High The Moon”–John Lewis -music critic for The Guardian, Uncut, Metro, etc

The legendary "First Lady of Song" gets a long-overdue documentary tribute in this lively overview of her remarkable career. After surviving a rough childhood and adolescence that included abuse, reform school, and homelessness, Fitzgerald won the Apollo Amateur Night contest in her first public appearance at age 17. Despite lacking conventional good looks ("I ain't no glamor girl"), she achieved early fame with such hits as "A-Tisket, A-Tasket" in the 1930s, became a key member of the Bop revolution in the 1940s, broadened her appeal with the celebrated composer Song Books of the 1950s and 1960s, and toured almost constantly in the 1960s and 1970s. Fresh interviews with such musical legends as Norma Miller, Tony Bennett, Smokey Robinson, Johnny Mathis, Cleo Laine, and Itzhak Perlman testify to Ella's greatness, while her once-estranged son Ray Brown Jr. provides a more intimate perspective. (MR)

Q&A with purchase, featuring producer Reggie Nadelson and author/music critic Will Friedwald will now be joined by author Margo Jefferson and singer Camille Thurman.

Margo Jefferson is distinguished culture critic and author of the acclaimed book Negroland

Camille Thurman, a singer and saxophone player, is a member of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra.

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