FILM: What happened, Miss Simone?


When I was an undergrad at Berkeley I happened to hear Nina Simone’s fugue-like and crescendo-driven version of “You’d Be So Nice To Come Home To,” from her “Nina at Newport” album.  I was blown-away by it.  (Hear it here.)   Last night I watched the bio-documentary devoted to her life and work, “What happened, Miss Simone?”  It is a powerful, unsettling, and touching film.  Simone’s iron authenticity, both in her musical and personal lives, skated a line between brave art and crippling pathology.  This is a dark film.  Worth watching.

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3 Responses to FILM: What happened, Miss Simone?

  1. Richard Track says:

    Home bound, I too watch movies. ‘The Amazing Randi’, about a magician very unusual.

  2. ronroizen9 says:

    The Randi film was mentioned to me by somebody else recently. A long time ago, Charles and I attended a presentation giving by TAR at an AAAS conference at a hotel in San Francisco. It was a period when the magician Uri Geller was bending spoons telepathically and performing other remarkable tricks. Geller seemed to be claiming that he had genuine supernatural powers. TAR used his AAAS presentation to demonstrate that Geller’s tricks could be performed by a professional magician with no supernatural assistance. There were, as I remember it, about 800 people in the audience — a big and interested crowd of scientists! After one particularly remarkable trick I raised my hand to ask TAR a question. “How did you do that trick?” I said. TAR responded that magicians don’t reveal the mechanics of their tricks. I responded by saying, in effect, “Well, if you won’t show us how you did the trick then how do we know that you didn’t use magic?” TAR replied that we’d just have to trust him. The exchange stopped there, but the delightful implication (I thought) was that whether it was Geller or TAR under consideration, both implicitly demanded that we’d “just have to trust them”!

    • ronroizen9 says:

      Later, incidentally, at lunch at a small San Francisco eatery, Charles and I actually managed to puzzle out how the trick was done: TAR clipped the newspaper article upside-down.

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