Morgan Neville, shown at right, the movie is full of music and rhythm, heartache and semi-triumph, as it recounts the past and present and allows us a glimpse of the maybe future of some of these amazing singers. Ms Love's career, in particular, is given a large swath of time and exposure -- from her misuse by the crazy and talented Phil Spector to her near-rise, obscurity (cleaning houses in Los Angeles!) and resurgence. One of the ultimate cabaret experiences of TrustMovies' life came some years back when he saw a show (at the now defunct Fein-stein's at the Regency) of Ms Love paired with Freda Payne (yes, love & pain!). Both women were terrific, but Love was off-the-charts amazing. That voice, the energy, the absolute focus and freedom of voice, feeling, movement this woman possesses!
As the movie moves along, you become aware that one young woman -- Judith Hill, below -- is going to keep attempting this, while another -- the equally,
Lisa Fischer, shown above, may just stay put, in back of the "stars." And yet it is also clear that this position -- the titular 20 feet from stardom -- ain't so bad in many regards. The singers are hugely prized by some of the stars (Jagger is effusive in his praise) and audiences knows and love them, too.
The movie also lets us hear from performers like the great Claudia Lennear (below) and Merry Clayton, along with Táta Vega and The Waters family -- all of whom have had fine careers. Even if some of them didn't, perhaps, maximize their potential, all of them have a lot to show for their time in (or at least near) the sun.
RADiUS/TWC, and appearing on DVD and Blue-ray via Anchor Bay Entertainment, hits the streets this Tuesday, January 14.