fbpx Amazing Grace | Gene Siskel Film Center
Film Series: Runs & Limited Engagements

Amazing Grace

2018, Alan Elliott and Sydney Pollack, USA, 87 min.

Show Times

  • Fri, Jun 7th 2:00pm
  • Fri, Jun 7th 6:00pm
  • Sat, Jun 8th 5:15pm
  • Sat, Jun 8th 7:45pm
  • Sun, Jun 9th 3:00pm
  • Mon, Jun 10th 6:00pm
  • Mon, Jun 10th 8:00pm
  • Tue, Jun 11th 8:15pm
  • Wed, Jun 12th 6:00pm
  • Thu, Jun 13th 6:00pm

“Delivers one of the purest, most concentrated blasts of satisfaction in a long time."—Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune

“The film event of the year…a testament to the Queen of Soul at the height of her powers.”—Dan Callahan, The Wrap

This extraordinary documentary of Aretha Franklin’s two-night recording session for her 1972 Grammy-winning album Amazing Grace remained unfinished for 38 years, due to seemingly insurmountable technical problems. Modern sound technology effected a resurrection of the footage of the 29-year-old Franklin performing before a live congregation at the New Temple Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles, in full possession of her glorious talent, with the Southern California Community Choir as backup. Accompanying herself on the piano or standing alone at the microphone, Franklin radiates the power that makes grown men weep and audiences sway to her soaring voice in incomparable renditions of numbers including “Never Grow Old,” “Amazing Grace,” “Wholy Holy,” and “Mary Don’t You Weep.” Participation by Rev. James Cleveland, Franklin’s childhood mentor, and her dad, Rev. C.L. Franklin, underlines the film’s exuberant sense of the sacred. DCP digital. (BS)

The Friday 2:00 pm screening and the Saturday 5:15 pm screening have open-captioned dialogue.

The Sunday and Tuesday screenings of AMAZING GRACE will be followed by an audience discussion led by Aaron Cohen, regular Chicago Tribune music contributor and author of "Aretha Franklin's Amazing Grace," as well as the forthcoming book, "Move On Up: Chicago Soul Music and Black Cultural Power." Cohen will sell and sign copies of "Aretha Franklin's Amazing Grace" in our cafe following the discussion.

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