‘Whitney’ Review: Lifetime Music Biopic Is Totally Tone Deaf, Says Dominic Patten

If you’re a Whitney Houston fan, like millions are, then Saturday night will be a big deal. With the debut of the Angela Bassett-directed Whitney movie and two related specials, Lifetime is going All Houston All Night. However, as my video review above says, Whitney is just not good at all — even by celeb biopic standards. It’s also not about the superstar’s last years and death just before the 2012 Grammys, if that is what you are looking for.

Stiff in direction and acting and without any of Houston’s singing, the biopic features former America’s Next Top Model runner-up Yaya DaCosta in the title role. Arlen Escarpeta plays her husband and ex-New Edition member Bobby Brown. Mark Rolston is there in a very unflattering portrayal of music mogul Clive Davis. Shem Bitterman wrote the screenplay. He also penned the 2013 Betty And Coretta TV movie that starred Bassett, who is making her directorial debut here.

The Houston family have denounced the biopic almost since it was first announced. Today the singer’s estate reiterated their very strong dislike of Whitney. “I say this to all Whitney’s family, friends and fan base: If you watch this movie, watch it knowing that Lifetime is notorious for making bad biopics of deceased celebrities and brace yourself for the worst,” wrote Pat Houston, the singer’s sister-in-law and president of the Whitney Houston Estate on the deceased superstar’s official website. “Never would Whitney allow her story to be told by an inexperienced team and how naive of anyone to think otherwise, unless you’re caught up in illusions of grandeur that you can just do anything and people will accept it,” she added to previous jabs at Bassett and Lifetime. “This made for TV movie is certainly not a trailer to Whitney’s life story.”

Will you be watching Whitney? Take a look at my review and tell us what you think. Tell us what you think of the TV movie too.

This article was printed from https://deadline.com/2015/01/whitney-review-lifetime-movie-whitney-houston-biopic-1201349076/