We see Jones’ stage fright poignantly illustrated by her hand shaking uncontrollably as she grips a paper cup. But only seconds later, she walks onstage and transforms into the superheroine her fans know best, visibly soaking up the applause, the cheers,
After viewing the first time, my initial criticism was that Kopple spends too much time in Jones’ chemo clinics and not enough time at concert halls. My knee-jerk reaction as a fan of her music was that I’d much rather watch two hours of Jones and her band doing what they do best, proving that good old-fashioned funk and soul never die, no matter what the musical industrial complex is trying to sell you at the moment.
But watching the documentary a second time softened that reaction somewhat. While I’d still like to have more music in the film, I realized that seeing