AMY: Finding The Real Amy Winehouse


Amy Winehouse tragically became the brunt of cruel jokes by comics the likes of Jay Leno. Every symptom of her psychological suffering was up for grabs: her bulimia, her drug addiction, and her state of mind: “She’s like a mad person.” Amy, the sensitive, sad, and revealing documentary by Asif Kapadia, sets those who brutally misunderstood her straight. There’s nothing funny about psychological troubles. In real footage of Amy from her childhood to the end, Kapadia gives us an emotionally raw window into the real Amy Winehouse. Her family and ex-boyfriend may criticize him for getting some things wrong. We’ll never know for sure. What no one can deny are Amy’s words. Her candid and, even blunt, honesty about herself – in the things she said and in her lyrics. She wrote only about her own experience. The video footage and her songs leave us an emotional legacy and Kapadia has done Amy justice in bringing her to life before our eyes. Amy may have had a few stints in rehab – despite her famous “no, no, no.” What she tragically didn’t have was therapy. In my next post, I’ll talk about how, as a psychoanalyst, I would understand what drove Amy to alcohol, drugs and an eating disorder – aside from how impossible it was for her to handle her celebrity.

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