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Sexual abuse in his childhood, drugs and a huge talent: that was the life of Whitney Houston

A documentary by Kevin Macdonald explores the turbulent private and artistic career of the singer, who died at 48 years

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Sexual abuse in his childhood, drugs and a huge talent: that was the life of Whitney Houston
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No one artist has achieved nine numbers 1 consecutive on list of bestsellers in America as did Whitney Houston. Not Elvis, not Beatles, not Michael Jackson. And probably no one has yet combined a physical presence and such an imposing charm with a voice of such magnitude as Houston. All this is in Whitney, documentary that has been released today out of competition in Cannes. But along with that talent re was also a woman who had been sexually abused as a child, an exorbitant maternal pressure to achieve success, a jealous husband, deep doubts about her sexual orientation and that she had access to how much drug and alcohol was seemed. Houston's life journey is very similar to that of Michael Jackson or Amy Winehouse (who had his own documentary in Cannes), or musical stars whose lives ended dramatically. The Whitney Houston case, in one-room bathtub of Beverly Hilton Hotel on February 11th, 2012, at its 48 years.

Kevin Macdonald, Whitney's director, knows what he's doing. It has a long curriculum in world of documentary (y are superb touching Void, winner of Oscar one day of September or centered in Bob Marley, and he declares himself unsatisfied of filmed on Mick Jagger), besides having worked in fiction in long as Last King of Scotland or shadow of power. At Whitney he has opted for a chronological development of history, but he keeps revelation of sexual abuse for final third of footage, when he delves into interior demons that drove Houston (Newark, 1963-Beverly Hills, 2012) not to abandon His addictions, eir se drugs and alcohol, eir her husband, Bobby Brown (in documentary, musician refuses to talk about narcotics). And although he has interviewed more than 70 people, only 40 appear in 120 minutes of film, because according to filmmaker, many were lying.

It brings a new reflection on sexual orientation of Houston, and his friendship with Robyn Crawford, woman who designed her image

To understand Whitney Houston, it must be remembered that his mor, Cissy Houston, was a singer, better known for being a showgirl of big stars like Aretha Franklin or Elvis Presley, with his parents recently divorced after birth of Whitney, small of three Siblings, in Newark, new Jersey, children's childhood was spent in or family homes during maternal tours. This track is given by his bror, by mor, Gary Garland-Houston, who ended up playing in NBA: "We spend a lot of time in four or five different houses of or family, as if we were welcome." Almost all of m also of artists, like ir cousins Dionne and DeDe Warwick. And Garland is one who tells that of seven to nine years a woman abused him, and that was marked in heart. He also did it with Whitney. It was DeDe Warwick, and Mary Jones, aunt of Whitney Houston, confirms that artist told her. Jones, besides, was one who discovered his corpse in Beverly Hilton bathtub.

Through that revelation, life of Houston is observed in a very different way. For example, it brings new lights on its sexual orientation. At pressure of his mor, who projected in her all his ambitions but also raised his voice to be unique, at age of 18 Houston went to live with his best friend, Robyn Crawford, great absent from documentary. One of hairdressers in Houston tells that singer was "what is now known as sexually fluent" and even gave him a vibrator at Christmas to fill his desires. Crawford doesn't want to talk about Houston brors, who accuse her of being a demon for her lesbianism. But Crawford was correct in his artistic decisions: she designed dresses of performances, decorations of tours and music videos. In short, if voice of Houston was work of his mor (who taught her to differentiate between singing with guts, heart or head), image was Crawford's thing.

When Whitney Houston married rapper Bobby Brown, Crawford followed his side. However, when blockbuster of bodyguard exploded and Brown became a whirlwind of jealousy regarding his wife, Crawford was expelled from his circle. Two voices in documentary tell that demon that led singer to addictions came from that he was not able to accept a sexual orientation that had been tainted by abuses of his aunt. And that subsequent and failed life decisions were born from that childhood: he did not divorce until very late Brown because he did not want to be like his separated parents and because he craved to comply with what is considered normal in American society, he took for years of It turns his daughter so that nobody touches it... and that ended a girl surrounded by drugged and drunk adults, with which Bobbi Kristina Brown was anor life derailed. His mor had already tried cocaine and marijuana at age 16, Kriss started earlier.

Someone says that sometimes Houston stayed with Michael Jackson and sat toger without talking for hours in a hotel room. "Probably, re was no one on earth who could understand her better." Macdonald shows those moments of relaxation and happiness in documentary, which has had collaboration of family, although final assembly decision will be reserved by director, who contacted Nicole David, film agent of Houston, to film Life of its exrepresented.

There is also space during two hours to enjoy ir songs, ir dichotomy between artist, Whitney Houston, Nippy, his family nickname, a simple girl who just wanted to sleep and watch TV. Of his triumph before those who criticized his step of soul and R'n'B to a pop closer to prevailing white taste. In a skilful social and musical turn, his interpretation in 1991 SuperBowl of Star-Spangled Banner, American anm, with a change of pace from usual 3/4 to a 4/4, which made him more African American, reconciled him with all possible social layers. If bodyguard, in 1992, and main song of that movie, I Will Always Love You, became most popular artist of moment (until Saddam Hussein used an Arabic version of song for an election campaign), following years were those of his Plummeting, with disastrous tours and millions of dollars thrown in unsuccessful recordings of unpublished albums.

Only after divorcing did he try to rehabilitate himself, but n he no longer had money to be able to pay for his admission to a clinic. She, woman her far, king of illegal hustling in Newark and later accountant of her daughter, came to sue for 100 million of dollars for money not received after his dismissal. Her, who kept her brors, cousins and family in general on payroll for decades. The film ends almost as it begins, with images of first performance on television in 1983 of star. And a final coda: His daughter also appeared in a drowned bathtub, also after consuming drugs and narcotics, but with only 22 years. He died in 2015 after six months in a coma.

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