Flash Movie Review: Jimi: All is by My Side

I have been fortunate to have met several noteworthy individuals in my life, mostly on a statewide level. There were however a few famous celebrities I have seen, just never had the chance to actually talk to them. In regards to myself, I have no aspirations of being famous. My only hope is to get through this life without hurting anyone’s feelings. This does not mean I do not want to be part of a historical event, however. One of my dreams is to be sitting in the audience at the Oscar Awards telecast. If I were to break my desire down to a more basic level, one of the reasons I love traveling to different places is so if they wind up in the news I can say I was there; I was at the place they were talking about. For whatever reason, I get great pleasure in being able to say this. Imagine being at an event, whether it is cultural, sporting or on an international scale and something extraordinary takes place that will be talked about, to be remembered by future generations. I do not know about you but I would love to be part of that convergence of remarkable, famous, historical, life changing and any other adjective one could think of events.    BURSTING into our conscience at the 1987 Monterey Pop Festival Jimi Hendrix, played by Andre Benjamin (Idlewood, Battle in Seattle), was something new and different in the musical world. With his dominance over his guitar playing and his cool funky look, maybe some but not all fans at the festival realized they were going to be witnessing history. Having only seen film clips of Jimi’s performances, I was looking forward to seeing this musical biography. Andre was so cool and gifted in this role. I do not know if it was a spot on performance of Jimi per se; but it sure came across the movie screen as believable. The whole retro look of this drama played well with some of the actors such as Imogen Poots (That Awkward Moment, Need for Speed) as Linda Keith and Hayley Atwell (The Duchess, Captain America franchise) as Kathy Etchingham; besides being fun to watch on a visual level. Where this film failed was the screenplay. The entire movie felt like it was trying to cram in as much as they could in the chosen time frame and all it wound up doing was providing snippets of Jimi’s life with little substance. I never felt connected to the characters which led me to periodically being bored. It would not matter if you are a fan of his type of music or not, the movie intended to show the beginnings of a musical genius. Unfortunately it never reached iconic proportions of its musical star.


2 1/3 stars

About moviejoltz

From a long line of movie afficionados, one brother was the #1 renter of movies in the country with Blockbuster, I am following in the same traditions that came before me. To balance out the long hours seated in dark movie theaters, I also teach yoga and cycling. For the past 3 years, I have correctly picked the major Oscar winners... so join me as we explore the wonder of movies and search for that perfect 4 star movie.

Posted on October 9, 2014, in Drama and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. Don’t you find this is often a problem with biopics? They try to cram too much in and also tend to take a linear storyline which makes the plot trajectory predictable.

  2. I would have LOVED to have seen Jimi Hendrix perform The Star-Spangled Banner. AMAZING!!!! I would have been spellbound, to say the least.

  3. Well this isn’t about the movie or your review, but my husband went to Woodstock when he was 16 and saw Jimi play! He lived in Vermont at the time and pretty much “lost himself” for several days. At the time he had no clue what a significant event he was attending. And coincidentally, Jimi and I share the same birthday, albeit exactly 20 years apart…

    • This was so cool to read and is perfect to fit in with this movie. How lucky your husband was to experience such an amazing event. Thank you so much for sharing it with all of us.

  4. Hi – check out my blog today – our state of South Carolina just made history this week, and my family was a part of it!! They were even interviewed on TV!! 🙂

  5. A great review Moviejoltz. The movie was certainly a nice attempt at capturing an inside glimpse of Jimi Hendrix’s life, as he entered the UK music scene and soon after becoming a rock god. You are not alone in your assessment of the movie coming up short in it’s projection of the guitar hero, as fans and movie going audiences affirmed. The script deviated too far from reality, and even Kathy Etchingham, who is still fighting on Jimi’s behalf, to try and set the records straight about his life, ended up suing the production company, which pushed them to delay release of the film and apparently re-edited some scenes. In writing the script and filming the movie, production never contacted her for her consultation for any part of it, and she called them out on that in the media.

    The great thing is that fans of Jimi, who desire to have first-hand knowledge of what really took place at his arrival, and life in London, can go to Kathy Etchingham’s facebook page and chat with her, and also view an excellent, never-before-seen images collection of photos that she regularly post with her and Jimi, plus many other famous musicians of the time, who frequented the couple’s apartment daily.

    • Thank you so much for this wonderful update. I had heard the producers were not granted the rights to Jimi’s iconic songs, which was a huge disappointment for me. Once again thanks and I so appreciate you taking the time to explain the back story to this film.

  6. Thank you for this review and your wonderful personal comments. I’m 68 and the daughter of an entertainer and businessman and have been associated with people of status. “Jimi” is a romantic, theatrical presentation of just one person, astrologically and numerologically chosen, to be “famous” in his time period. Seeing this theatrical presentation, and your comments of really wanting to be a part of history playing itself out is quite interesting. When you have lived behind the scenes of people of note, you come to understand that they are really ordinary people playing their particular role, just like you, simply playing their role, and hopefully really having fun with it. Of course, the tragedy of the shadows of entertainers, politicians, sports celebrities, etc., lives is just that, no different than an ordinary individual having to go through the depths of overcoming and transcendence. Being on the road whether one is a politician, musician, actor, lecturer, etc., is boring, lonely, and just moving from one gig to another. It is not glamorous. It is a job just like any other job, the difference is that one has less privacy and is paid more. Any ordinary individual who is frugal, can live a life of wonderful luxury on a smaller scale, and with wonderful peace-of-mind without having to deal with the terrible politics of public life and issues. There is definitely a price to be paid for each individual who is a person of note.

    • Very true words that no matter what level a person is of note, it is a job. The gift is them sharing their gifts with others. Though it is such a cliche, I look at everyone as being the same; we all walk around with rented bodies that keep changing and altering everyday. What is inside is the most important aspect. Thank you once again; I am becoming speechless the further I delve into your comments.

  7. Thank you for your most kind response!!!! The challenge to the ordinary individual not in the “limelight”, is to truly embrace and love who it is that they are, the opportunity to do what it is that they do, no matter how mundane it may appear, it is a great service to humanity, no body needs to feel inadequate because they are not in the “limelight”!!!!!

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