Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance with Somebody: Movie & Music

Recently, I saw the biopic about Whitney Houston’s life, Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance with Somebody. It tells the story of Whitney Houston’s career started, as well as the up and downs of her music career.  

Naomi Ackie did a remarkable portraying the late Whitney Houston. She captured the artist’s essence and bold character. Her mannerism and body language were impressive. There were scenes in which Naomi Ackie bared an incredible resemblance to the phenomenal artist. She has an unforgettable presence throughout the movie.

The film describes Whitney Houston’s career in detail up until the day of her passing. The first example of her singing is at the church choir scene. The moment that represents the starting point for Whitney Houston’s music career was when her mother, Cissy, could not perform at the club, so she said to encourage her to perform on stage.

Another critical moment the movie demonstrated in Whitney Houston’s musical career is when she signs a contract with Clive Davis (Stanley Tucci). Then the suggestions of songs by songwriters were coming in, and I learned of the origin of her first single, How Will I Know

The appearance on The Merv Griffin Show was another turning point for Whitney Houston. 

I appreciated the clips where Whitney Houston searched for a song from the various demos- choosing something that represented her style and vibe. The most impressive scene in the film is she stands up for herself during a radio interview when the interviewer accuses her of selling out.

The bold scene in the film is the 1991 Superbowl performance when Whitney Houston chose to wear a tracksuit instead of an evening gown. Another phenomenal moment was the 1994 Nelson Mandela concert. There’s also a brief mention of the 1994 American Music Awards.

I especially like the sequence when Whitney Houston chose to take on the role of Rachel in the film The Bodyguard and the video of I Will Always Love You, the famous remake of Dolly Parton’s single. It was an incredible reenactment. I had no idea Whitney Houston almost refused the part, which seemed surprising.

The movie also shows the vulnerable side of Whitney Houston when she records the song Why does it hurt so bad recording after her fight with Bobby Brown. The same applies to her days in rehab, which were intimate and profound. 

Whitney Houston’s 2009 appearance on the Oprah Winfrey show was a touching moment. 

Spoiler Alert

The heartbreaking sequence was when the movie fast-forwarded to February 11, 2012, the day of Whitney Houston’s passing. Then it goes to a flashback of the 1994 American Music Awards, where she profound her famous medley, a historic moment.

The coverage of Whitney Houston’s personal life was profound. Her struggles with the family dynamics and addiction were challenging, even heartbreaking. The chapter about her time with Bobby Brown showed the up and downs. The most touching moments were with her daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown.  

The movie has impressive recreations of Whitney Houston’s music of her famous hits How Will I KnowIt’s Not Right, but It’s Okay, and I Will Always Love You. The sequence for the video How Will I Know was fantastic to watch. The layout and the dance moves were incredibly accurate. When the film covers the time when Whitney Houston worked on the movie The Bodyguard, the reenactment of the video for I Will Always Love You was remarkable. Naomi Ackie looked so much like the late singer. Another great reenactment is the video for the song It’s Not Right, But It’s Okay. The dress, the make-up and the movements were impressive in all three videos. Watching these video reenactments added a dynamic touch to the movie.

  After the last in the movie, it ends with general information about her career and how she passed away, then a montage of the real Whitney throughout her life.

Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance with Somebody is a film that has me appreciating Whitney Houston’s music even more, and I learned a lot about her life and career.

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