"Oh, it's a bit upsetting at the end, isn't it?"
So begins the haunting new trailer for "Amy," Asif Kapadia's documentary portrait of the troubled Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Amy Winehouse.
Those words, spoken with a sly smile by Winehouse from the relative calm of the vocal booth, of course take on an eerie resonance in the aftermath of the retro-soul artist's death from alcohol poisoning at age 27 four years ago.
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Set to her hit song "Back to Black," the rest of the two-minute trailer glimpses the many sides of Winehouse, who was described in a Times obituary as "a phenomenon: a Jewish girl from a London suburb with a retro beehive, a devil-may-care attitude and a voice that channeled Aretha Franklin and Ruth Brown."
Seemingly a reluctant star, Winehouse is seen in an interview saying, "The more people see of me, the more they'll realize that all I'm good for is making music."
The reality of fame was different. Amid shots of flashing paparazzi scrums, a voice-over says, "The world wanted a piece of her." Another voice, seemingly referring to her struggles with media attention and substance abuse, ominously says, "This is someone who was trying to disappear."
Kapadia, who won the British Academy of Film and Television Arts' documentary award for "Senna" in 2012, assembled "Amy" with extensive archival footage and previously unheard tracks, and the film has met with rave reviews since its unveiling at the Cannes Film Festival earlier this week.
The singer's family, however, has criticized the film as "a missed opportunity" to celebrate Winehouse's life and talent and said that it "is both misleading and contains some basic untruths."
A24 will release "Amy" in Los Angeles and New York on July 3 and nationwide July 10.
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