Respect (2021) - full transcript

Following the rise of Aretha Franklin's career from a child singing in her father's church's choir to her international superstardom, RESPECT is the remarkable true story of the music icon's journey to find her voice.



Wake up, baby.

They wanna hear you sing.

You wanna sing?

Yes, please.

All right.

Clarence, Ella's
looking for you.

Wait here, ree.

Okay. I'll be right back.

They butchered
my essay. Took all the politics out.

Can you believe that?

Communism is
absolutely for the negro.

How else are we gonna have
everything we ever wanted?

Now, how does a man with one
eye play like he has four hands?

You been practicing?

Yes, Mr. Tatum.

She could hit
three octaves easy.

You know, you the
finest looking cat here, right?

Nigger, I know that.

What else you got?

Hey, ree.

Hey, uncle Sam.

No more segregated clubs for me.

I'm not walking through no
one's kitchen to get to the stage.

Wol said to them, "I'm so
happy to be performing in england,

"but just remember there's
only one heaven, one earth

"and one queen.

"Me. Dinah Washington."

"That Elizabeth on y'alls
throne is an imposter."

You didn't. Oh, yes, I did.

And I made 'em bow before me.

Well, look out, y'all.

The entertainer is here.

He said he wanted a race novel.

Sure, he desegregated the army.

But he didn't do a damn thing
after that.

Hi, aunt Ella. Uncle Duke.


You ready, ree? Come on.

Excuse me? Everyone.


For those of you visiting my
home for the first time,

this is my daughter, aretha.

She'd like to sing
a little something for you.

What would you
like to sing, ree?

How old is she?

She's 10,

but her voice is
going on 30, honey.

Aretha would like to perform

my baby likes to bebop.


I was gonna record that
on my next album.

Can we do a duet?

I was hopped on
the head now I'm tall as a treetop

and just to end like new

I find the melody's dead

'cause my baby likes to bebop

and I love to bebop too

I love to bebop too

Sing, baby!

How I love to bebop too

I saw old uncle ned
do a dance and a flip-flop

he jumped like the hepcats do

I flipped my lid when he said

"my baby likes to bebop"

and boy...

And I like to bebop too

Back to bed with you.

when the saints go marching in

when the saints go marching in

those white folks don't know
what to do with her.

Sock it to 'em, Clara!

Yeah, grandma!

Sock it to 'em! Sock it to 'em!

Momma's here!


God! Babe, I missed you so much.

Hi! Momma!


My babies!

My precious!

Come on, let's go! Let's go!

Let's go! Bye, grandma!

Come on, baby!
Let's go in the car!

Barbara: In
everything that's light and gay

I'll always think of you
that way

I'll find you in the morning sun

and even when the night is new

I'll be looking at the moon

but I'll be seeing


Sing another one, momma!

Oh, ree, that's
the third song now.


No, I want to talk.

Please? Oh, god...

Oh... oh, all right.

What if I sing-talk?

How is aretha doing?

Aretha's doing all right

just all right?

What about church?

We praising the lord, momma!

Praising the lord!

Praising! Praising!

Praising! Praising!

Praising the lord!
Praising the lord!

All daylong

You still singing
at the Saturday night parties?


Mm. Don't say "yeah."

"Yeah" is common. Say”yesfi


You enjoy it?

Yeah. Yes.

Look at me, ree.

If you ever
don't want to sing, don't.

I love singing.

No, I know. I know.

Your daddy doesn't
own your voice, ree.

Nobody does but god.

And you don't ever
have to fear any man.

You understand?

You are so worthy, ree.

Don't you ever let anybody
tell you otherwise.

Yes, momma.

Oh, ree, don't cry.

Come on, I'll see you
for your birthday.

Three weeks is a long time.

I know, but I am
always with you.

Even when I'm not there.


Ree, get back here!


Bye, momma!

We 're marching

congregation: We 're
marching marching up to Zion

that beautiful

that beautiful

city of Zion



I'm the oldest. I should
be in the front of the line.


We have nothing to fear, church.

'Cause what is the white man
compared to god?

What is any law, any injustice

compared to the power
of our lord?

That's right!

'Cause he will
deliver us from the den like Daniel.

And Daniel went into
that lion's den.

Daniel went into
that lion's den.

Yes, Jesus!

Not yelling

nor fussing.

Not crying!

Not complaining! No!

Praising the lord!


'Cause he knew

the lord was with him.

He feared no man!

Can you hear me, church?

I wish somebody would pray
with me 'cause he will!

He will!

He will! He will!

He will shut thejaws
of segregation,

and any man, person

or institution that would dare

stand against us.

He took us from slavery,

he took us from
the valley of reconstruction.



Freedom! Freedom!

Freedom! Freedom!

Freedom now!
Praise him! Praise him!

Preach, daddy, preach!


Hey? Ree? Ree! I

how come you're
not singing tonight?

Daddy didn't ask me to.

What's your doll's name?


That's a pretty name.

You're pretty, too.

What's your boyfriend's name?

I don't have a boyfriend.

I can be your boyfriend.

Would you like that?

We'll have fun.

There's my

luck wrong

come on, ree!

I don't want to.

Ree, I will beat your behind.

What are you doing?

I don't care if you beat me.

I don't want my hair done.

Don't you wanna look pretty
for church tomorrow?

Y'all wait in the living room.

Come on.

Don't sweat out all my work.
That's gotta last you all week!

Sit down.

You wanna tell me what's wrong?


I know you don't wanna tell me,

but you can always
tell the lord, ree.

He loves you, no matter what.

I am standing

on the Jordan

gazing across

thy stormy tide

you're supposed to be
in bed, ree.

There I 'ii rest my every burden

come, come
and join me for a while.

Till all doubts and fears

lord, subside whoa, yes

what if I wasn't here?

What do you mean by that?

I don't know.


See how nicely
their voices are blending?

They let Sam
take the proper lead.

Too many members of
our choir try to stand out

instead of supporting
the soloist.


Come to the phone.

Play this next. Okay.

Right back.

Barbara's dead.


Heart attack.

I'll tell
them in the morning, mama.

No. No, you cannot
wait till tomorrow

to tell them
their momma is dead.

No. No.



I'm sorry, baby.

Let's go inside.

Happy birthday to you

happy birthday to you

happy birthday dear ree-ree

happy birthday to you

come on now, ree.

She just miss her momma.

They all missin' her,

but how long
she gonna keep silent?

Goin' on three weeks.
She gotta...

She just needs a
little time. That's all.


Miss Clara made you this
beautiful cake,

and reverend James
came especially for you.

What do you say, ree?

Do you say, "thank you"?

Do you say something?

Make a wish, ree.

I can't do this.

Come on.
Momma. Momma.

Come on, baby. It's all
right. Momma. Momma.

Itsahrqht come on, baby. Momma.

James: Do not carry


to god in prayer

why are you hiding over there?

Come on over here
and get your lesson.

You know this one.

Tell you what, I'll be the choir

and you play the lead.

Three, four...

Ree is helping me with my

I see.

Has she spoken to you?

No, we ain't gotten that far

do you think you can
stay silent forever, ree?

Look at me.

We must honor the gifts
that god has given us, ree.

You will be singing
in church tomorrow.

James, can you prepare her?

Yes, sir.

Thank you.

Don't let nothin' come between
you and your music, ree.

Music will save your life.

God holds our hand.

Through him, we can do anything!

He's a catcher!

A dream catcher!


Amen. Amen.

And now,

my daughter, aretha,
will bless us with song.

There is

a fountain


with blood

drawn from

Emmanuel's veins

and sinners

sinners plunged

beneath that flood


sinners plunged



lose all

their guilty stains

Lose all their guilty stains

guilty stains

lose all their guilty stains

all their guilty stains

and sinners plunged
sinners plunged

beneath that flood

lose all

their guilt

guilty stains


hallelujah hallelujah

yeah, yeah, yeah



did somebody say

we are running
through the flood?


Yeah, yeah, yeah

I wonder, do you feel all right?


I said, do you feel all right?



I'm ecstatic
to be able to report to you

that the day before yesterday,
we filled up thejail.

We have already won a victory
here in Birmingham.


Due, in no small part

to the Valiant work
of our leader.

A man whom I feel honored
to call my friend.

The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

All right! Yes, sir!

Yes, sir!

Come on! Somebody!

Some people

think that we are crazy

for taking on this fight.

But the forces against us
are strong

and they are determined
to stop us.

But we are just
as determined to go on!


with love.

As long as it takes
to win our freedom.


And Jesus is here with us
every single step of the way.


Yes, sir!

Uncle Martin...

Now don't call me
uncle Martin anymore.

You make me feel old, that's
the problem. I want to march.

Don't look at me like I'm
still a child. I'm not afraid.

Oh, you're not? No.

Well, damn.

Then you need to be
leadin' this movement

and teaching me how to not be
terrified of these crazy white folks.


Why do you want to march?

After all this time
traveling with you,

after all the horror we've seen,

what kind of question is that?

Are you runnin' from your daddy?

So, you tell him
you wanna march?

I don't have to.

It's my decision. I'm a
grown woman, remember?

Oh, so, you ready
to orphan your kids now? Hmm?

Are you?

But you're doing it anyway.

Because I have to.

And I don't? Ree...

Singing for the movement

and sending people into battle
with a song is not enough anymore.

I need to be with them.

You have a good talk?


It was a good talk.

Brother, come on.

She's restless, I can tell.

I don't know if it's restless.

She just wants to do more.

What kind of more?

I'll be there in a minute.


Clarence! Eddie!

Momma! Momma! Momma!

My babies!

Are you all right, baby?

Clarence, you go
in your room and wait for me.

Come here. It's all right, baby,
it's all right. Come on. Come on.

It's all right. It's all right.

Every time I come back,
they want me less.

That's not true.

They talk about you
all the time.

Every night, I show 'em
where you are on the map.

One cookie.

Fix your face now.

This party is for y'all.

How are you, mama?

God is good.

All the time.


Let's eat. I'm starving.

So, where y'all headed?

We go to Tennessee, then to
Georgia, then to north Carolina,

and then back to Alabama,
I think.

Damn. Martin's tour's
busier than daddy's.

Erma, sometimes we hit
two states in one day.

What was that story about
aunt mahalia not paying you?

She said I would receive
my reward in heaven.


No, ree. Uh-uh.


Smokey... hey, hey, hey.

He's got some news, ree.

I heard you're cuttin' a record.

Yeah, with Berry over at motown.

They got some sweet sounds, ree.

They're signing a bunch
of folks in the neighborhood.

Listen, we are trying to put
Detroit on the map.

You gotta be a part of it.

I would love that. Yeah?

Cecil, let me talk
to daddy about it.

Dontbnngitup unfillsay.

You know what?
Let's let Berry talk to him.

Better yet, his sister.

She can talk ice
out of the devil's mouth.

What are you drinking?


Just iced tea?

With a little bourbon.

Yeah, you look like
a bourbon girl.

How long are you in town for?

A week.

Then I return to Tennessee.

Well, then, I won't
waste any time.

I'd like to take you out.

I'd like you to take me out.

How about tonight?

Come and help me set this table.

Yes, to tonight.


Excuse me a moment.


I put up with you coming
to my house all these years

'cause you were friends
with my friends.

But I don't want you
around here anymore.

May I give you
some counsel, reverend?

Ephesians 6:4 says, "fathers,

"do not exasperate
your children.

"Instead, bring them up in the
training and the instruction of the lord."

Lord, give
me strength. Are you serious?

You may wanna loosen
your grip on aretha.

You know, every minister's
daughter I've ever known...

Nigger, you don't
wanna mess with me

or mine.

I got this.

I got it.

Take that off.

Everyone! Everyone!

Please, please, gather around.

Aretha, will you
join me, please?

This party is not just

a homecoming.

It's also an announcement.

God is moving us on
to our next chapter.

I've been talking to a number of
record producers about aretha.

There were many who were
interested in working with her.

Tell them what it is, ree.

A plane ticket to New York City.

Congratulations, ree.

Thank you.

This is it.


Excuse me?

I have a meeting with a John
Hammond of Columbia records.

Receptionist: Sign in, please.

You ready?

I'm ready.

I've always seen aretha
as more than a gospel singer.

We”, clearly from her demo,
she's so much more.

Stand up, ree.

Turn around.

There can sometimes be
a lack of effortlessness

of the kind you find in a Lena
home or a Dorothy dandridge.

But what aretha lacks
in formal education,

she more than makes
up for in experience.

She has performed before
every type of crowd imaginable,

from small churches
to audiences of thousands.

You can sit down now, ree.

I'm curious.

Who are your favorite artists?

Dinah Washington.

Ella Fitzgerald.

Hmm. Sam Cooke.

All family friends.

Sam would very much like aretha

to sign with rca.

Well, we can't have that.


to Columbia records.


Prove yourself as a jazz
artist, and everything else will follow.

I understand.


Are you ready, aretha?

Yes, Mr. Hammond.


The conductor will point at you
when he's ready for you to begin.

You got to
accentuate the positive

and eliminate the negative

and hang on to the affirmative

but don't mess
with mister in-between

she sounds wonderful,
doesn't she?

She does.

Like a black Judy garland.

You got to spreadjoy
up to the maximum

and bring gloom down
to the minimum

and have faith or pandemonium

is liable to walk upon the scene

Ladies and gentlemen,

the village vanguard is proud
to present miss aretha Franklin,

debuting her latest record,

Good evening,
ladies and gentlemen.

We hope you enjoy
the show tonight.

I see an old family friend. Dinah
Washington is in the audience.

I'd like to sing a song in honor
of her great artistry and talent.

This bitter



Don't you ever sing
the queen's songs

when the queen
is in front of you!

What the hell were you thinking?

I'm sorry.

You wanna take me on?

Liar. No.

You wouldn't be here if you
wasn't trying to replace me

and every other bitch
out here singin'.

How many albums have you had?


and no hits.

You out here, but I can see you still that
little girl in your daddy's living room.

You're singin'
everything and anything.

Shoop shoop one day,
skylark the next,

and then some
Billie Holiday blues.

Girl, you're all over the place.

What do you wanna sing?

I don't know.

You don't know?

I want hits. I just want hits.

Girl, you need to let go
of that "up with the race"

booker t Washington
proper negro shit.

That's not you.

Your daddy likes to pretend that's
who he is, but that's not who he is either.

Child, y'all church folks are some
of the nastiest people out here.

Ray Charles told me
that the best sex he ever had

was when he was singin'
on the gospel circuit.

Honey, find the songs that
suit you. That move you.

Until you do that,
you ain't goin' nowhere.

Put some teabags on that.

Take the puffiness down.

How's big mama?

She's all right.

The kids?

They're good.

Child, you ever gonna tell us
who their daddy is?


You wanna tell me
what's wrong? I can't.

No answer.

Call her again.

Oh. There we go.

I didn't know you were
comin' in today, daddy.

You are 68 minutes late.

Mr. Hammond asked me to come in.

You've been skipping
interviews and gigs.

The demon is back.

Ree has a tendency
to indulge her pain.

Can we talk about this
somewhere else?


It's important that you
understand that this behavior

is not a reflection of her
upbringing or her race.

Well, I've worked with
bessie Smith and Billie Holiday,

aretha is a Saint in comparison.

She wasn't raised
in a whorehouse like them.

She was raised in a proper home
with every convenience and luxury.

But still, a darkness
would descend on her.

I called it the demon.

She'd lock herself away,
wouldn't speak, move,

just wallow in
whatever imaginary...

You told me before we came out
here that you had it under control.

I have control.

You keep complaining
that you don't have any hits.

This is why you don't have
any hits. Acting like a trifling...

Apologize to Mr. Hammond.

No, there's no need
to apologize.

That is not why I don't have hits.
You don't pick good songs for me.

Sorry for being late,
Mr. Hammond.

It won't happen again.

I'm ready to record
when you are.

Please excuse me while
I go to the ladies' room.

So, you gonna
come with us this weekend?

I have a gig.

We can go after your gig.

You work too hard.

Not according to my daddy.

Well, you need some fun.

Come with us.

Can you introduce me
to his friend?

I don't know him.

You were supposed to
take me out in Detroit.

Yes, one of my singers ran
into a little trouble out of town,

so I had to take care of it.

I think my father said something
to you to make you reconsider.

That's a nice little
table you got goin' on in your head.

I know what you do.

It doesn't bother me.

I know it doesn't bother you.

You're rebelling
against your daddy.

I don't mind.

Listen, you wanna use me
for my body,

you can use me, baby.

You can wring me dry.

You and me,
we've been through it.

So we can skip all the flowers and
the promises, and the love bullshit

and just have some fun.

I like fun.

And we'll have plenty of it.

I want one thing from you.


To hear you sing.

Just for me.

What will I get in return?

The best night of your life.


I want you to think about me
when you sing tomorrow.

You're not coming home with me?

What about
the best night of my life?

I didn't say
it would be tonight.

There was a boy

a very strange enchanted boy

they say he wandered very far

very far over land and sea

a little shy

sad of eye

but very wise was he

That very day he passed my way

I'm sorry.

I'm sorry.

Would you like
to take a break, aretha?

I'll get it right this time.

Take 12.

You have all my records.

You like them?

I bought them.

Which one you like best?

They've all got something.

Is this one your favorite?

Or this?

What are you doing?

Or this one?

Went to 64 on the charts.

You didn't even open this one.

You don't like them?

I didn't say that.

Then say it.

I won't be upset.

No one does.

First, I've listened
to all your albums.

Including this one.

More than once.

Secondly, I love music.

I take it seriously.

I managed my first artist
when I was 15.

Thirdly, what you
experienced yesterday,

17 takes on one song?

That happens to me
every time I hear you sing.

My brain gets all


Well, first,

my apologies for putting you
through so much pain.

And secondly... uh-huh.

You should have never told
me about your achilles' heel.

On ourfirst date...


Damn it.

Keep singing.

I didn't think you were comin'
home for two weeks.

I miss my babies.

And y'all.

Who's that plate for?


Sweet Jesus, are you serious?

What are you thinking?
Please help me with daddy.

Help me.

Good Sunday, everybody.

What the hell is this?

You didn't tell them
I was coming?

I don't know what you think
you're doing here and I don't care.

Just leave. Now.

Aretha asked me to come

and aretha can ask me to leave.

I want him to stay.

This is my house.

Since when do you get to tell me
who gets to be in my house, ree, huh?

I want you to get to know him.

He's not what you think.

Are you pregnant again?

We just wanna be together.

I love your daughter, reverend.

And I think she loves me.

I do.

No! No!
Oh, my lord!

Clarence! No!

Didn't I tell you
not to mess with me or mine?

Didn't I tell you? Clarence!

Son, don't you let this man put
your church and your soul in jeopardy.


we have to figure this out.

I'm not going anywhere.

You can't see
through this hustler?

You're the greatest hustler

Every night, she picks
herself apart because of you.

She thinks it's her hair,
her body, her voice.

She worries about failing you,
but it's your failure.

Get out! Just...

Daddy, I know how busy you are.

You have so much
going on all the time.

Running a church,
the speakin' engagements,

managing Carolyn.

I know about your contract
at horizon records.

I was gonna tell you.

When? When the
damn album came out?

Nobody can tell you anything,
ree. You're so jealous.

Jealous? Of you two?

You think you better than us?

That's exactly what
she's saying. No!

Quiet! Quiet! Quiet!

You are not leaving this family

for that piece of trash.

I need a change.

I wanna sing what I wanna sing

and I wanna dress
like I want to dress.

And I want Ted to manage me.

He's not worth the shit
at the bottom of my shoe.

So that means that you think
I'm worth less than that.

After all we've been through.

After all that
I've done for you.

I have to do this, daddy.

You are going to beg
me to take you back.

But I won't.

I won't.

I'm gonna say goodbye
to my children.

Okay. And then we'll go.


Y'all not gonna fix me a plate?

You keep beating up
these club owners,

there won't be any clubs
left for me to sing at.

No one disrespects us.

I just don't know
what else to do

after nine albums...

Yes, this is Ted white.

I'm calling to speak
to Mr. Whitfield.

Well, I'd like to speak to him
about aretha Franklin.

Mommy can't cook either.
It's sticky!

I'm gonna be honest with ya.

Your version of skylark
is one of my favorite songs.

Thank you, Mr. Wexler.

Please, call me Jerry.

You know what etta James said
when she heard it?

She said you pissed all over

and she would never sing
it again in her entire life.

You ruined that song for etta
James. That is how good it was.

And I'm not
bullshittin' ya, okay?

A lot of these guys out here will
say anything to get in your drawers,

but that's not me.

I'm sorry. All right, I'm crude.

And you're a church girl,
and I should watch my mouth.

I'm sorry.

You do talk, don't ya?
Not just sing?

You are the sweetest
thing, aretha.

I'd like you to call me
miss Franklin.

Okay, miss Franklin.

What songs would you
like to sing?

I want hits.

We're done with standards.

We want original songs
made for aretha only.

Great! We are speaking
the same language, my man.

One of the songwriters I represent
wrote a good song for aretha,

I never loved a man.

Terrific. I've got the
perfect place to record it.

I'm working with this little
studio down in Alabama and...

Aretha's only recorded
in New York.

Yeah, I know that, but I think
that's part of the problem.

It's overproduced,
it's a little too polished.

I mean, these boys down there...


Don't be offended, all right?

I say boys because
they're young like aretha...

Like miss Franklin,
not because they're negroes.

These guys are the best musicians
I have ever worked with in my life,

and that's saying something.
I've been doing this a long time.

They don't need to read charts.

They just feel their way
through the music.

It's really something.

How does that sound to you?

Sounds good.

And I'm not controlling
like Hammond, okay?

I'm gonna give you plenty of
space to do your thing, all right?

This is your show,
miss Franklin.

Your record.


This is it?

What did all the glamor
at Columbia get me?

Do you know who
you're messing with?

"Do I know who I'm..." Do you know
who you're messing with, buddy?

You tryin' to
screw me over, Rick?

You in my town now,
buddy! This is my place!

It's my record!

Everything you see here
is mine! This is my record!

Miss Franklin, Ted,



Nice to see you. Hello.

I'm Rick hall.

This is my place.

You don't have any negro
musicians in this town?

Uh, we were just
discussing that. Not today.

Not today?

There was
a miscommunication, Ted.

Negroes only allowed to
pick cotton in these parts, huh?

Percy sledge had that same look
on his face when he first come in here.

And then he heard 'em play

and he was very
satisfied with his record.

I think you will be, too.

Dunk? Vvedonthave

I like your style.

Where can I
get a jacket like that?

You'd have to come to Harlem.

Always wanted to go to Harlem.


You're a no good heartbreaker

who's this singin'?

The songwriter.

And you're a cheat

Sings like a writer.

Rick, you want drums on this?
Or you just wanna keep it boring?

I don't know, Roger. You know
any good drummers around here?

Don't, actually.

It's just slow.

It's just a little slow.

Little slow, yeah.

All right! Come on, guys!

Hang with me on this.
This is a good song!

It's a great song.

It is what it is.

All right. Let's see
what we can make of it.

Hey, spooner

you wanna keep that shuffle
on there or straighten it out?

Let's straighten it out.

Straighten it out.

Straightening out.

Put some fatback on it.

Yeah, like a king Curtis deal?


Hey, man, that's groovy.

All right, let's go with that.


You're a no good heartbreaker

you're a liar and you're a cheat

and I don't know why

I let you do these things...

Okay, let's hold up.

Hold up. It sounds like
Sunday morning service in there.

Yeah, I was just about to say,
it's a little too churchy, guys.

I liked it.

Let's find a different
pocket, all right?

Something with more swing.

Speed it up.


No, don't speed it up.
Follow me.

Friends keep telling me

that you ain't no good

but oh, they don't know

I would leave you if! Could

stop. Stop.

It's too busy.

Let the song do the work.

Yeah, stop showing off, guys.

Yeah, boys, ifyou're trying to
impress me, it's not working.

Yeah, and more importantly,
it's startin' to piss me off.

Maybe we should do something
closer to the original arrangement.

Nah. No, it's done.

You kept steppin' on me.

You were all over the neck. I
couldn't tell what you were doing.

I'm all over the neck?

Find your Lane, Jimmy.

Look who's talkin'. They
could hear your crash in Texas.

Well, my
horn arrangement's killer.

Y'all let me know
when you're ready to hear it.

You gonna save the song, Jack?

As I have on many
an occasion, okay.


Good job, Jack.
How about that.

Spooner's got it!
Spooner's got it!

Yeah, he does.

You're a no good heartbreaker

you're a liar you're a cheat

I don't know why

I let you do these things to me

friends keep telling me

that you ain't no good

but oh, they don't know

Go on, baby.

I'd leave you if! Could

I guess I'm uptight

and I'm stuck like glue

'cause I ain't never I ain't

I ain't never, oh, no

loved a man

the way that! I love you, yeah

Sometime ago I thought

that you had run out of fools

but I was so wrong

you got one that
you'll never lose

that is rocking.

Yeah, it sounds pretty good.

I can do better.

It's like the perfect mixture
ofgospel, blues...

And sex.

Baby, that's some of the best
singin' and playin' I've ever heard.

I want to overdub some
backgrounds on the chorus.

You know, I was just thinkin' about
that. We can bring in some local talent...

No, I want to do it.

Okay, even better.
Save me some money.


Let me talk to you for
a moment. Okay, okay.

Had a rocking thing on it.

Yeah, it did.

It was rocking.

The way that I, I love you

I wasn't lookin' at nobody.
I was trying to do my work.

He was looking at you.

Thought he was gonna
get him some nigger tail.

Pack the bags.

It sounded good.


It was really comin' together, and
you had to show your ignorant ass.

I oughta leave you here and let
those crackers have a go at you.

This was the best ieversounded.

Couldn't you hear that?

We'll finish this in New York.

With my musicians.

Your musicians ain't shit.

You're not about to
mess this up for me.

Where the hell do you think you're
going? I've waited too long for this.

Where the...

Like hell you are.

You don't know who you're
fucking with! Come here!

Ted, it's
Rick hall. Open up.

This cracker here.


May I come inside?

I thought we should talk.

I got nothin' to say
to your hillbilly ass.

I wish you
wouldn't call me names.

Do I call you names?

And what would you
like to call me, whitey?

I come here to make peace.

No, ldont wanna make
peace with you, cracker.

I come here to tell you that I fired
that horn player who was troublin' you.

And how'd it feel to take
orders from a nigger?

You know,

I don't hate you
'cause you're a...

A negro.

I hate you 'cause
you're a giant asshole.

Don't you ever step foot
near my studio again, all right?

Miss Franklin, you
are welcome atany_.

Don't you talk to
my wife, cracker!

Now, you keep pushin' me...

Yeah, what you
gonna do, redneck?

And you keep
pushufrne_. Peckennood!

Now, you gonna
"redneck" me one more time

and you gonna "whitey"
me one more time

and I'm gonna "nigger" you!

Bitch, call me a nigger again.

Call me a bitch again.

You stupid-ass bitch!

You hungry?

I'm all right.

Come on now, baby.

Come on, come on.
Come to grandma. Come on.

Ree is home!

That bastard...

I'm gonna kill him.

You here for long?

I'm not sure.

All I'm asking
is for a little respect

when I come home

hey now

hey, hey, hey hey

Did aretha Franklin call?

WoNo. No?

Get it, momma!

If you wanna

you can do me wrong

call Ted white.

But all I'm asking is
for a little respect

when I come home

do that thing, momma!

Just start callin'
everybody on that list.

Give me more mashed potato.

Hey, little girl

you're sweeter than honey

oh, I'm about to give you

come on, mama Franklin!
Now, let's see you dance!

All right!

A little respect
when I come home

hey, hey, hey


She isn't here.

And if you
touch her again, I'll...

Go to hell.

All my money


And all I want to do

is get me some respect
respect when I get home

hey, hey, hey

mind if I sing
with y'all? Me too!

Hey, hey, hey

that's what I need

that's what I want
that's what I need

your momma cut her
first record at that store.

Jesus be a fence.

Folks lined up around
the block to buy it.

They lined up to
buy your records, too.

I'm about to tell 'em
that story now.


Ain't that...

Don't say "ain't."

But ain't that you singing?

But, oh, oh, oh they don't know

they_. They released that?

That I'd leave you if! Could

all right!

It's a hit!

Ree, it sounds wonderful.

Don't you think so, baby?

It's amazing, ree.

That's my sister!

It's amazing.

That's your momma singing!
That's amazing!

The way that! I love you

that's your momma singing!


Mr. Wexler...

I'm ready to record.

Thank god.

I want to record
with the muscle shoals band.

Those boys have soul.

Yes, they do. They do.

And I want to provide
the backup singers.


you've gotta be a do-right
do-right, do-right

all-night man do-right, do-right



they say that it's a man's world

but you can't prove that by me

and as long as
we're together, baby

show some respect for me

'cause if you want a do-right

do-right, do-right

All-day do-right, do-right


chorus: Woman

Sittin' 'round

me and my man

be it my mother my brother


You can't treat me like that.

I know.

I got demons too, ree.

Can you help me fight mine
the way I help you fight yours?


I'm so sorry.

I will help you, baby.

I love you so much.

I love you, too.

'Cause company's
all right with me

every, every once in a while


oh, when me and that man...

Ree, we've been talkin'.

How's Clara doin'?

She's fine. She's good.

Is daddy ever gonna marry Clara?

I'm surprised
she's stayed this long.

Why would she leave?
They're church royalty.

The same reason they all leave.

Same reason momma left.

The same reason
you need to leave Ted.

Ted is nothing like daddy.

The way you two go at it?

Just like momma and daddy.

Momma and daddy didn't fight.


You're not joking?

Joking about what?

You don't remember?

Even I remember, and
I was just three or four.

Remember what?


we used to climb up on the roof

and sing as loud as we
could to drown them out.

How could you forget?

I still have
nightmares about it.

Well, I was glad when
momma finally left.

Why did you leave?

You don't remember?

Remember what?


What you want

you know I got it

what you need

you know I got

what are you doing?

Get erma.

Sure thing.

Oh, yeah

what you want

you know I got it

what you need

ooh, you know I got it

all I'm askin'

is for for

Give me...

Both: Just a little bit

just a little bit

just a little bit

just a little bit

just a little bit

just a little bit
just a little bit

one more time.

Just a little bit

just a little bit

go a third below, Carolyn.

Just a little bit


Just a little bit


Just a little bit


Just a little bit

just a little bit

yeah, baby just a little bit

take it home

just a little bit

sock it to me


sock it to me

oh, big mama...

What the hell?

It's almost 3:00 am.

We're writin' a hit song.

It's Otis Redding's song.

Just a little bit.

Oh, god...

You really like it?

It's wonderful, ree. It's great.

You're sure?

Don't do that.

Y'all tell me if
you don't really like it.

I like it. I love it.

We love it, ree.



ree re-re




re-re-re-re re-re-re-re

that's really good.

Respect just a little bit


Whata line!


find out what it means to me


take care, tcb

I need a Harlem bassline,
Tommy. Notalabama.

Hmm. Well, I ain't been
to Harlem yet.

But let's funk it up.

That's nice.

That is groovy!

Come on in, spooner.
What ya got?

I'm gonna keep it simple.

Like you always do.

That's groovy.

Oh, it's her song now.

Otis who?

What you want baby, I got it

what you need you know I got it?

All I'm askin'
is for a little respect

when you come home

just a little bit
just a little bit

hey, baby when you get home

just a little bit
just a little bit

I ain't gonna do you wrong
while you gone

I ain't gonna do you wrong
'cause I don't wanna

but all I'm askin'
is for a little respect

when you come home

just a little bit
just a little bit

yeah, baby when you get home

just a little bit
just a little bit

yes, sir

I'm about to give you
all of my money

and all I'm askin'
in return, honey

is to give me my propers
when you get home

just a, just a, just a

yeah, baby when you get home

just a little bit
just a little bit

Ooh, your kisses

sweeter than honey

and guess what? So is my money

but all I want you to do for me

is give me some respect

Yeah, baby bring it to me


just a little bit
just a little bit

find out what it means to me

r-e-s-p-e-c-t take care, tcb

sock it to me sock it to me

a little respect
just a little bit

I got to have just a little bit

bring it home just a little bit

respect just a little bit

Crowd: Aretha! Aretha! Aretha!


Nobody is talking
about motown anymore.

All they want to talk about
is aretha Franklin.

You did it, ree.

I did it. Yes, you did.

What did you wish for?

More hits.

Aretha Franklin,
you are the queen of soul.

What is soul music?

The musician having the
biggest influence on this genre

is grammy winning soul singer,
aretha Franklin.

From a young age, I saw aretha
possess extraordinary talent.

Ted is my husband, manager,
and favorite critic.

Hello, Ted.

Right now, gospel is
the main influence

on contemporary
rhythm and blues,

and that's due to aretha.
Others have mixed

gospel and so-called
secular music before her,

but aretha puts a unique spin
on it that people can relate to.

It's always great
when families sing together

because there's a language
between siblings

that you can't recreate
with just hired hands.

Ain't no way is a song
written by Carolyn for aretha,

and something aretha
can relate to because,

I think, they know
each other so well.

Show me how the
melody goes in the verse.

Ain't no way

for me to love you

if you won't let me

that's it.

Let me try.

Ain't no way

for me to love you

if you won't let me

it ain't no way

for me to give you all you need

If you won't let me
give all of me

I know that a woman's duty

is to help and love a man

and that's the way
it was planned

oh, but how can I

how can I, how can I

give you all the things I can

if you're tying

both of my hands

oh, it ain't no way

ain't no way

it ain't no way yeah

ain't no way

it just ain't no way, baby

ain't no way

ain't no way, baby

ain't no way

ain't no way

for me to love you

if you won't let me

stop tryin' to be
someone you're not

How cold and cruel is a man

who paid too much
for what he got?

And if you need me like you say

say you do

oh, then please please, please

don't you know that I need you?

Oh, it ain't no way

It ain't no way

baby, ain't no way

it sure ain't no way

ain't no way, baby

so it fades right here?

You genius you.

You really feelin' this one,
aren't you, ree?

I love it.

I can tell.

See, so, she'sjust being
completely honest

in a song about what she feels

at any given moment.

And that's why the
audience relates to her.

I'm still trying to
figure out who I am.

I'm not sure yet, but I'm
trying to find the answer.


I am here to honor aretha.

Or ree, as I like to call her...

For her tireless work
for the civil rights movement.

Every time

I ask aretha to sing
at a fundraiser,

church event, or a conference,

she shows up.

No matter where she is
or what she's doing,

she always answers the call.

And I am honored
to present aretha

with this proclamation today.

And I wish that every day

was aretha Franklin day!

We love you, aretha!

After all of that there's really
only one thing left to say, right?

Lookin' out on the mornin' rain

I used to feel so uninspired

and when I knew
I had to face another day

lord, it made me feel so tired

before the day I met you

life was so unkind

but you're the key
to my peace of mind

'cause you make me feel

you make me feel

you make me

feel like a natural woman


oh, baby

what you've done to me

what you've done to me

you make me feel so good inside

good inside

and I just wanna be

wanna be

close to you
you make me feel so alive

Excuse me, miss Franklin.

I'm so sorry to bother you,

but I just
havetotehyou. Itsahrqht

when you sing,

ifeelhke you are
talking about my life.

It helps me, because
it is hard out here.

But I feel like you understand,

and, well, I just
have to thank you.

Stay strong.


Yes, thank you.
Thank you very much.

We have to go now.

I'm flying to Atlanta tomorrow
to do a benefit for sncc.

Cancel it.

I have some meetings
and interviews lined up.

Daddy and Martin asked
me to do it. I'm going.



I love when you call me Jerry.
It means you're not mad at me.

Heho, Ted.


Come on in.

Everyone wants you,
miss Franklin.

We've got interest in France,
england, Germany...

All right, we don't have to
name every country. All of Europe.

The entire continent wants you and I
think we should schedule something.

We should schedule a tour that
coincides with the new album.

We could do that or we
could send her out now

to create an appetite
for the new record.

I think that's best. I have six
venues ready to clear this...

And who are you,


Ken Cunningham.
I'm the tour manager.

Tour manager?

So, you already booked the tour?

It's not booked.

No, he said
the venues was ready.

That's right. They
were available if we want 'em.

You have to Gauge
interest early for it.

I know how a tour works.

No what?

No European tour dates.

Why not?

Because we have some
TV dates we'd like to schedule first.

Oh, yeah? With whom?

Carol Burnett, Andy
Williams. Mike Douglas.

All right. So, those shows will
be there when she gets back.

We have a chance here to
expand her reach around the world.

To make her a global superstar.

Do you know what a
rare opportunity that is?

We're considering
some movie offers as well.


Aretha. You wanna do movies?

I think I could.

Of course you could.

You could do any
damn thing you want.

You thought you could
just bring us in here,

tell us where to go, what to
do, and send us on our way?

You should know by now, Jerry,
that is not the way I do business.

Ken, how much money
could aretha make on the tour?

Quarter of a million.

Carol Burnett payin' that?

Movies payin' that?

We'll consider it.
With the right band.

All right. Well, the muscle
shoals guys have started their own label.

King Curtis is ready to go.

Curtis is rockin'.
He's perfect for you.

Curtis is good, but I've got
some people lined up.

Really? Five minutes ago,
you didn't wanna go on this tour.

Now, you've got people lined up?

Check the tone, Jerry.

Just take it easy, Ted.

I'm sorry. Forgive
me for my tone.

What musicians do
you have lined up, Ted?

George Davidson.

Miller brisker. Russell Conway.

All right. You can't have
the premier singer of our time

touring Europe with a ragtag
bunch of amateurs

suitable for backing some
third-rate blues singer

in a bucket of blood
in loserville, Louisiana.

I want to use Ted's
musicians, Mr. Wexler.

"Mr. Wexler?"

Oh, god... aretha, please.

Can we move on to the next
item on the agenda, please?

Whatever you say, miss Franklin.

So, they do this funny thing in Amsterdam
when they really love a performer.

They pelt them with flowers.

Pardon me.

I warned them
not to get too crazy with it,

but you might
get hit with a few.

After the show, please.
After the show.

Right through this door.

Watch your step.

Chain chain chain

chain chain chain

chain chain chain

chain chain chain

chain chain chain

chain of fools

for five long years

I thought you were my man

but I found out

I'm just a link in your chain

ya got me where you want me

I ain't nothin' but your fool

ya treated me mean, yeah

oh, you treated me cruel

chain chain chain

chain of fools

now every chain

has got a weak link

I might be weak, yeah

but I 'ii give you strength

you told me to leave you alone

fix this or I'll have your job.

My father said "come on home"

my doctor said "take it easy"

Aretha! Aretha!

Can you comment on the recent
time magazine cover story?

Oh, I haven't read it yet,

but it is a great honor to grace the
cover of such a prestigious magazine.

Translator: This time article says that
your husband beat you in a hotel lobby.

Excuse me?

Is this true?

No more questions! Let's go!


It's a lie! It's a dirty lie!

Get off! Come here!

No, that's too low.
I want ten million dollars.

They're gonna be sorry
they wrote this shit.

And you know, your daddy, he
doesn't come across too well either.

He may wanna
sue 'em his damn self.

How are you gonna prove
that you didn't hit me?

You did and everyone saw it!

Another man would have
killed you by now.

Crazy way you act.

Get out of my way.

What are you gonna do, huh?
What are you gonna do?

I mean it.

You would still be singing some
al jolson shit if it wasn't for me.

I wrote half your hits.

Are you laughing at me?

You know damn well
you didn't write one word.

One note of anything.

I just let you put your name on
it to keep you from throwing a fit.

Inever loveda man came
from me. My songwriter!

That song wasn't anything
until I rearranged it.

And I sang the hell out of it
because it was about you.

You're a lying, no good,

just useless, psychopath.


I'm done with you.

Yeah, you've said that before.

You wait until
your demons come back!

After livin' with you,

I'm ready for 'em.

This song goes out

to anyone who has
ever felt mistreated.

Two, three, four.

You better think think

think about what you're
trying to do to me

think think think

let your mind go
let yourself be free

let's go back let's go back

let's go way on way back when

I didn't even know you

you couldn't have been
too much more than 10

just a child

I ain't no psychiatrist

I ain't no doctor with degree

but it don't take
too much high IQ

to see what you're doing to me

you better think think

think about what you're
trying to do to me

yeah, think think think

let your mind go
let yourself be free

oh, freedom freedom

freedom freedom






Hey, think about it
you, think about it

there ain't nothing
you could ask

I could answer you with I won't

chorus: And I won't

but I was gonna change
but I'm not

'cause you keep
doing things I don't

you better think think

think about what you're
trying to do to me

I said think think

let your mind go
let yourself be free

and you need me need me

and I need you don't you know

without each other

there ain't nothing we can do

think think about it right now

what you're trying to do to me

think about it

you better think

Thank you.

I have some trash
I need taken downstairs.

Right now, please.

Just come over.

I know.

I don't care.

Just be with me.

You sure that
ain't too much, ree?

Listen, you're about to
have the meal of your life.

She put her foot in there.
Smell it.

Yes, I did, yes, I did.
She put somethin' in there.

Put herfoot in, she did.

I don't know. That smells funny.

Darlin', get outta there.

You want me to get
that, ree? Yes, answer.

Get outta here!

All right, put it back.


And that's me.

This will bring big mama
to her knees, honey.

You goin' to hell for that.


She knows.

No, no, no_.

No, no, no_.

What's wrong?

What's wrong?


What is it?



It's Martin.


Oh, god...

They shot him.

Oh, god...

I wanna say it one more time

For the broken-hearted

I want you to take my hand

lord, lead me on home

'cause we gotta stand

lord knows I get tired

lord knows I get weak

and, oh, every day

every day

I'm worn

but, oh, Jesus

through the storm

Lord, I need you to

hold my hand

'cause you a precious lord

Precious lord

Lead us home

He kept telling me

that they were gonna get him.

But I said, "Martin, the
lord has more for you to do.

"You're gonna be all right."

But he knew.

He knew.

Other ministers
were jealous of him,

but I never was.

He was my friend.

I ministered him,

advised him.

Prayed with him.

More time than I can count.

I loved him, ree.

He loved you.

Who's gonna lead us now?

They don't listen to me anymore.

You still have the
biggest church in Detroit.

I still know
how to get 'em goin'.

I do.

Clara: Can ijoin you?

No. I just wanna talk to ree.
Can I do that?

Can I just talk to ree?
Of course you can.

Daddy, daddy, daddy.
Of course you can.

I'll be right there
when you need me.

They need leadership, ree.

You should see the way
these fools

are steppin' over Martin's
body to be in charge.

I don't want no part of that.

And these young
revolutionaries out here,

they don't want no
part of what we built.

They want to free our people.

They all talk.

Not all of them.
I like Angela Davis.

She don't care about
public opinion

and she's not afraid to speak
up to those pigs or anyone else.

Yes, pigs. Pigs?

You saw what they did to us
during the rebellion.


Why shouldn't we fight back?

And start a full-on war?
You think we can win that?

We're tired of
gettin' our heads kicked in.

Non-violence got us our civil
rights and our right to vote.

At what price? Our souls?

Our dignity?


I've been thinking.

We should hit the road again.

Why not?

A northern tour.

Mm-mm. Me preachin'
and you singin'.

Just think on it.

You don't gotta decide tonight.

I'm not doing that, daddy.

I know you got your very busy
tourin' and recordin' schedule.

This won't interfere with
that. I won't interfere with that.

I'm done with that.

I can't go back to
headlining with you.

You're not walkin' in the
spirit anymore.

That is not true.

You're drinking and
you're whoring around.

Same as you!

You not too old for me
to knock you on your ass!

You know that, right?
Is everything all right?

Just mind your own business!
I'm talkin' to...

Don't talk to her like that.

Have you lost your mind? Huh?


Maybe I found it.

Comeon, bts getyoutobed. Just_

Just don't.

I heard your conversation.

I'm not sorry.

No, you ain't got
nothin' to be sorry for.

Justdo yourthing, ree.

And you do it as big and as loud

and as long as you can.

Please, just
listen to it again, okay?

I have a great feeling about
this song,

and the Beatles
are getting restless.

They said if you
don't do it, they will.

The song is catholic, Jerry.

I'm a baptist.

That's crazy.

They caught Angela Davis.

That can't be right. What?

No, no, no.

Newsreader: Angela Davis,
a young black militant

who has been hunted
for nearly two months

on murder
and kidnapping charges,

was arrested yesterday at a
hotel in midtown Manhattan

by agents of the federal
bureau of investigation.

Angela Davis must go free.

Black people will be free.

My daddy says I don't
know what I'm doing.

I respect him, of course, but
I have to stick by my beliefs.

You have to disturb the peace
when you can't get no peace.

What the hell is this tour schedule?
Half the damn dates are gone!

All right, all right, we were just
about to have a talk with you about this.

We're not having
a family barbecue?

This is one of these
Ken hippie talks?

I told you
this wasn't gonna work.

Just breathe.

Put the damn dates back.

Don't do it, Cecil.
Listen, ree...

You work for me, Cecil.

You overbook.

You don't show up for half the dates,
then I have to deal with the fallout.

It's your damn job!

We're trying to help you.

Aretha, you need to slow down.

You stop for five minutes,
they forget all about you.

That's ridiculous.

How would you know, erma?
You barely have one hit.

Ree, you haven't
slept in months.

And you look like it.

You don't want me to tell you
what you look like, Carolyn.

Well, next time
you have a breakdown,

don't call us, all right?

I won't.

Come on, let's go outside.
Come on.

And don't call me
when you need a gig

or you want me to write liner
notes in yourjive-ass album

or introduce you
to some producers,

or just borrow some cash
that your ass never pay back.

If I don't work,
y'all don't eat.


Put the damn dates back, Cecil.

Three venues in three states
in three days.

Happy now? Yes, I am.

And don't ever pull that
bullshit with me again.

I know how to run
my damn business.

You asked me.

Y'all just wanna take my crown.

Oh, god. Please.

Ree, think about our son.
This isn't good for him.

Don't tell me I'm a bad mother.

Here comes the paranoia.
I never said that!

Olga, bring miss Franklin
a fruitjuice.

Don't you dare.

What you staring at?
Go get my lunch.

Yes, ma'am.

Tell me y'all don't want
what I got.

All right, forget it!

I can't talk to you
when that demon takes hold.

You don't know
what I go through.

Y'all don't know what
I've been through!

We love you, ree.

Why can't you see that, ree?

Get the hell out of my house.

No, don't move. We're
going to deal with this, ree.




Come on, baby, please...

Ree, listen to me.
They're here to help you.


It's your family.

Teddy! Calf! Come help
your momma sing now.

To be young gifted, and black

oh, what a lovely precious thing

Young, gifted, and black

oh, what a lovely precious thing

say it again.

To be young gifted, and black

open your heart to what I mean

when you're young
gifted, and black

your soul's intact

I'm gonna take the kids
back to Detroit with me.

I think that's best.

What are you thinking right now?

Just things.

What things?

Private things.

After all this time, you're
still keepin' stuff from me?

You don't keep stuff from me?

You should.

Why? I trust you.

Don't you trust me?


What do I have to do
to make it all the time?

Just let me be.

I know what to do.

Be here with me. Just let
your mind go quiet for a moment.

That would be easy if you
stopped talking.

What's wrong?


I have to make some calls.

You don't
have to call anyone, ree.

You don't know
what I have to do.

Don't go to that dark place.

Come here.

Come here.

Tell me what's wrong, baby.

You're shaking.

You act so tough.

I can see that
little scared girl in you.


I'm sorry.

I'm so sorry.

It's all right.


She can't do it, Cecil.

Put her on the phone.

She's asleep right now.
Her migraine.

Man, who do you
think you're bullshittin'?

Tell ree, she's gonna
get sued again.

Ladies and
gentlemen, the queen of soul,

miss aretha Franklin!

Hey, let us help you.


I say a little prayer for you

moment I wake up

before I put on my makeup

chorus: Makeup

prayer for you

combing my hair now

wonderin' what dress to wear now

wear now

say a little prayer for you

forever and ever
you'll stay in my heart

and I will love you

forever and ever
we never will part

oh, how I love you

together, forever
that's how it must be

to live without you

only bring heartbreak for me

I run for the bus, dear

while ridin' I think of us

chorus: Us, dear

prayer for you

And all through my coffee

break time

Ree? Can you hear me?
Don't move.

Your arm?
Someone get a medic!

Come here, baby, come here.

Rollover. Rollover.

Stay back!

I got you, I got you.

Back please.
Get back, please.

Keep back, please!

Is she okay?

It's gonna be all right, ree.

I can't do this anymore.



Amazing grace

how sweet the sound

That saved a wretch

like me

I once was lost

but now am found

our father...

Was blind

but now which art in heaven...


hallowed be thy name.

Thy kingdom come.

You always did know
how to make an entrance.


All right.

Okay. You come and sit.

Come on.

What y'all wanna sing?


In the morning...

An all-gospel record
has a very limited audience.

I don't care.

You do care.

You sat in that office
with me six years ago,

and you said
you wanted to make hits,

and I think you still do.

I'm making this album, Jerry.

All right, can you
just hear me out, please?

I'm making this album, or I'll never
make an album with you again.

All I wanna do
is drink now, Jerry.

Well, let me get you
into a program.

I'm in a program,
but I need the church.

I need the spirit.

It has always gotten me through,
and it will get me through again.

Okay. Well, can we just... I
mean, just think about this...

This album is not for me
or for you or anybody else.

This album is for god.

And you can'tjive god, Jerry,
so stop trying.


I'm not trying to jive
you orjesus, okay?

It's the gospel record.

It's 1972, for Christ's
sake. Sorry. I...


how about we make a documentary
film to go along with the record?

So, the international fans,
the hippies,

the atheists like me can
see you in your element

and understand the
music that made you.

You mean for white people?

Well, I...

All right. Yes.

That's a great idea.

Okay. Well, good.
So, you're not gonna leave me?

We're not done yet.

Oh, boy. What?

I want to
produce the album, too.

All right. Okay. Okay.

Choir: Flood my soul

hold! Hold!

You have to do something
with the longer notes.

You're not giving yourself
anywhere to go.

Start straight, then hit the
vibrato halfway through.

Tension and release, y'all.

Yes, and this song
is a lot more deliberate.

James: Yeah? Mm.

Take it from where we left off.

"In the stillness."

Choir: In...

In the stillness

yeah, that's it.

Of the midnight

oh, lord


sacred secrets secrets

secrets James: Oh, yes

he 'ii unfold

Thank you!

Oh, lord

inside I was

Said I remember

I remember my dear mother

lord, she used to pray

oh, sweet

sweet sweet precious memories

in my soul

And in these times

she taught me to pray


yes, she did oh, lord

Oh, lord

okay, all right,
we're gonna take a ten.

Let's take ten. Let's...

Are you all right?

I can't make
a fool out of myself.

There's gonna be
a film crew here.

And if! Break down like I did right
now, they gonna think I lost my mind.


Ree, the spirit is the spirit.

It moves when it moves.

What you want us to do?
Behave like episcopalians?

Now what's really bothering you?

You told me once

that music would save my life.

I did.

What if it doesn't?

The demon is strong.

Ain't no demon
hauntin' you, ree.

There never was.

Just the pain you've been
runnin' from your whole life.

But you gotta let it go, ree.

Give it to god.

It wasn't your fault.

And he knows that.

I don't know about tomorrow

or the concert or the album
or the documentary.

You in church right now.

You're safe.

So, ree,

let's have church.


It's good to see you.

We were in California, and we heard
that you were singing gospel, and...

Clara dragged me here.

Clara can't make you
do anything.

She's got pretty feisty
since you last saw her.

Glad you came.

That surprises me, 'cause we
haven't been getting on as of late.

You told me I wasn't
walking in the spirit.

I was angry.

You were with god.

You have always been with god.

He was with me.

I tried to run from him,
but he brought me back.

Like Jonah.

Like Jonah.

You taught me every song
I'm singing today.

I did my best.

But you have exceeded
all of my expectations, ree.

I'm about to bust wide open,
and you're just getting started.

I can't imagine
what you're gonna do next.

Because you can
do anything, ree.

First, give an honor to god,

who's the head of all our lives.

Yes. Amen.

James: I'm sure you all have
noticed the cameras by now.

Don't get distracted by it.

We here to have church, right?

Congregation: Amen!

James: All right.

This is the first
religious recordin'

by our first lady of soul.

Give a warm round of applause
for miss aretha Franklin.

We love you.


Amazing grace


how sweet


the sound


oh, that saved

a wretch

like me

I, I, I once


was lost

but, but now

congregation member:
That's right!

I'm found

I was blind

but now


amen. Amen.

Through, through



through many


and toils

toils and snares

I been in the midst of the storm

I've already

I've already come

Don't you know that it was

it was it was grace

Grace that brought me


so safe safe

thus far

and don't you know

that same old grace

will lead

me right home

right home

right home

right on home

Looking out on the morning rain

I used to feel so uninspired

when I knew I had
to face another day

lord, it made me feel so tired

before the day I met you
life was so unkind

but you're the key
to my peace of mind

'cause you make me feel
you make me feel

you make me feel
like a natural woman

when my soul was
in the lost and found

a lot of good men
came along to claim it

oh, yeah!

I didn't know
just what was wrong with me

until his kiss helped me name it

I'm no longer doubtful
of what I'm living for

'cause if I make it happen
I don't need to do more

'cause you make me feel
you make me feel

you make me feel
like a natural woman

like a natural woman, yes

baby, what you done to me
what you done to me

you make me feel
so, so, so good inside

and I, I just wanna be wanna be

I wanna get next to the man
that makes me feel so alive

you make me feel
you make me feel

he makes me feel

he makes me feel like a

you make me feel
like a natural woman

I feel like, I feel like

oh, yes, oh, yes woman

he makes me feel
he makes me feel like

you make me feel like

a natural woman

he makes me feel
you make me feel

he makes me feel like
I feel like

you make me feel like
a natural woman

a natural woman who

a woman, a woman, a woman
you make me feel

a woman

you make me feel like
a natural woman

a woman

a woman, a woman

I am woman

oh, yeah