Looking at Amy with a kind eye
What you see in the movie is pretty restrained -- there is some footage of her under the influence of drugs, but it's all in context -- we see the whole person. The director, I think, wanted to counter the tidal wave of negative press and visuals of Amy when she was alive. My first reaction is, good for him.
The movie Amy was respectful of Amy, which I appreciate -- it's long overdue. But is it balanced? I've read a whole bunch about her. I'm not sure the Amy (movie) perspective is entirely accurate, or at least it omits some important truths. The movie seemed to suggest that her success/stardom, and the people close to her, failed her horribly. I've read excerpts from people close to her suggesting this too:
“There was a huge chain of selfishness and negligence around Amy,” says [Nick] Shymansky. “I remember an expert saying on the news that she could drop dead at any minute. But there were still gigs being booked. I would never have anything to do professionally with someone in that state.” Says Davis: “The finger can be pointed at certain people, but in many respects we can all be blamed. I’ve gone through all those feelings myself. I would have had to be there 24 hours a day to try and help.”
That she was allowed to perform in public, over and over, when she was barely able to stand, would suggest gross mismanagement on the part of her record company. But I don't know. Her boyfriend/husband Blake may have introduced her to hard drugs. Her family may have been riding the wave of her celebrity, and record companies are (gasp) in business to make money. From what I've read since seeing Amy, her troubles started in her early teens. Long before she took the stage to sing professionally she was an impulsive girl prone to extremes of emotion. Bulimia, cutting, drinking, smoking pot, she did all of these things in her youth. She was kicked out of school and moved out of the house at 15. Amy omits, or at least downplays early signs of her addictive tendencies. I don't know why. It's possible that the sources I read were wrong -- but they seem credible, and they are echoed in many sources. Probably, it was a perfect storm of Amy's vulnerability and (at best) inaction from those close to her.
You all know I missed out on all of this while it was happening. What do you think?