Whitney (2018)

Whitney (2018 film).jpg
A tragic look at the real person behind the icon

Director: Kevin MacDonald
Running Time: 122 Minutes
Starring: Whitney Houston, Bobby Brown, Bobbi Kristina Brown, Cissy Houston, Gary Houston, Robyn Crawford, L.A. Reid, Clive Davis

For his latest documentary, prolific director Kevin MacDonald delivers an in-depth look at the life of Whitney Houston. Approaching the artist with fresh eyes, MacDonald sets out to answer the enigma that was Whitney, to get to the heart of who she was, and what caused her to make such unfortunate decisions in her life.

In order to answer this, the film is treated like an investigation. MacDonald sits down with those who were close to Houston, to get their perspective on what occurred, in an effort to unlock pieces of the overall puzzle. This is mixed together with archive footage and home videos, to try and dig deep into the person behind the music and the troubles. As the picture grows clearer, the reality of what past occurrences informed such decisions is evident, and gives more of an understanding to her person.

What we see is a woman who was very critical of herself, who felt the weight of each setback and issue that came her way. When a montage comes around, composed of media jabs at the star, there's no question about how little help this was to her fragile state. Much like 2015's Amy, this moment show how willing the bloodthirsty media is to attack such a vulnerable target, and when the public lap it up, the sense of being complicit is ultimately sobering.

A heartbreaking look at a troubled life, Whitney is a well composed and very informative piece of work. Don't be put off if your knowledge of Houston is limited, what Kevin MacDonald has crafted will appeal to newbies and fans alike.