Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Carnival at home? Check out our selection of films, music and books for the holiday

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One of the biggest myths of the jazz, the singer Billie Holiday (1915-1959), coincidentally or not, won a revival in the United States with two distinct works. The biographical film The United States vs. Billie Holiday debuts on the Hulu platform on February 26 and has already won a nomination for the Best Actress award at the Golden Globe (whose delivery ceremony will be on February 28) for Andra Day. And the documentary Billie, with colorized scenes of the real artist, has been available since the end of 2020 in Amazon Prime Video American.

Unfortunately, there is no date set for these two films to be accessible in the country. Which is unfortunate, given the historical size of the main character and even the Golden Globe nomination – which is often repeated at the Oscars (whose competitors for awards will be announced on March 15). Billie was a singer with a very personal style, who immersed herself in the lyrics of the songs to extract the most impactful and intimate interpretation, without vocal juggling.

As a singer, she influenced contemporaries like Frank Sinatra. As an artist, he engaged himself against prejudice, especially with the racist anti-lynching anthem Strange Fruit, from 1939. As a person, she was prostituted by her mother in her teens, mistreated by husbands and lovers and physically destroyed herself with heroin and alcohol until her early death, at the age of 44.

CULTURA 1 Carnival at home?  Check out our selection of films, music and books for the holiday Andra Day em The United States vs. Billie Holiday: ameaça?

Andra Day in The United States vs. Billie Holiday: threat? (Press Release / Press Release)

The United States vs. Billie Holiday focuses on the 1940s, a period when Billie became a “national threat” worthy of surveillance by the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, due to drugs and the pamphlet Strange­ Fruit. Arrested for possession of drugs in her apartment in May 1947, she was convicted and served time until March 1948, being released for good behavior.

“They said it was ‘the United States against Billie Holiday’. And that was how I felt ”, she said in her autobiography Lady Sings the Blues (whose most recent Brazilian edition came out in 2003). Billie already had a biopic in 1972, The Sunset of a Star, with singer Diana Ross. A film that was not bad (Ross was nominated for an Oscar), but did not live up to the figure. Now, the mission to live Lady Day on the screen was with another singer, Andra Day, who debuts as an actress at 36 years old. The documentary Billie brings the real Holiday in colorful presentation scenes. Good news: the documentary’s soundtrack is available on Spotify.

Quadro Cultura Billie 1 Carnival at home?  Check out our selection of films, music and books for the holiday

(Art / Exam)

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Carnival at home?  Check out our selection of films, music and books for the holiday