Amazing Grace 2.0 stars

Amazing Grace movie poster

Aretha Franklin recorded what turned out to be the biggest selling gospel album in history over a two-night period at the New Bethel Baptist Church in January 1972. The goal was admittedly to sell records, not tickets, but Warner Bros. still decided to send Sydney Pollack and four 16mm cameras to record the historic event. Ms. Franklin later sued to prevent the release of the film. One look and you’ll know why. The only attempt to explain the reason this took longer to release than The Other Side of the Wind can be found in the opening crawl: “The film, because of technical problems, was never finished.” The biggest technical problem involved a director — with six pictures (!) to his credit — whose failure to slate the shots made it impossible to sync sound and picture. Wary of the camera, Franklin has no interplay with the congregation. But when she opened her mouth to sing, Pollack could have filmed through the opposite end of a telescope and it would still be worth a listen. Alan Elliott received a co-directing credit. 2018.

Scott Marks

Showtimes

AMC La Jolla

8657 Villa La Jolla Drive, San Diego, 888-262-4386 | Directions

Sunday, April 21

4:30pm, 6:50pm, 9:10pm

Monday, April 22

2:10pm, 4:30pm

Tuesday, April 23

2:10pm, 4:30pm, 6:50pm, 9:10pm

Wednesday, April 24

2:10pm, 4:30pm

Angelika Film Center & Café

11620 Carmel Mountain Road, San Diego, 858-207-2606 | Directions

Sunday, April 21

5:40pm, 7:55pm, 10:05pm

Monday, April 22

11:10am, 1:25pm, 3:30pm, 5:40pm, 7:55pm, 10:05pm

Tuesday, April 23

11:10am, 1:25pm, 3:30pm, 5:40pm, 7:55pm, 10:05pm

Wednesday, April 24

11:10am, 1:25pm, 3:30pm, 5:40pm, 7:55pm, 10:05pm

Thursday, April 25

11:10am, 1:25pm, 3:30pm, 5:40pm

Landmark Hillcrest

3965 Fifth Avenue, San Diego, 619-298-2904 | Directions

Sunday, April 21

4:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:40pm

Monday, April 22

2:00pm, 4:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:40pm

Tuesday, April 23

2:00pm, 4:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:40pm

Wednesday, April 24

2:00pm, 4:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:40pm

Thursday, April 25

2:00pm, 4:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:40pm

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