DENNIS SCHWARTZ Movie Reviews

PRESENTING PRINCESS SHAW (director/writer: Ido Haar; cinematographer: Ido Haar; editor: Ido Haar; cast:  Ophir Kutiel (Kutiman), Samantha Montgomery (Princess Shaw); Runtime: 80; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Liran Atzmor; Magnolia; 2015-Israel-in English)

"Wonderful feel-good story."

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

Inspiring documentary that profiles an aspiring singer, Samantha Montgomery, who takes the stage name Princess Shaw. She is a soulful 39-year-old black woman living in New Orleans. She is employed during the day as a caretaker in a nursing home for the elderly. At night she writes songs and sings her own songs on her YouTube channel and also attends the local open mic shows. In Israel, the kibbutz-based innovative music composer and video creator Ophir Kutiel, known professionally as Kutiman, who is known for creating video mash ups of amateur YouTube performers through his Thru You project, creates a video for the unknowing emotionally giving and vulnerable raw talented Princess. She's a stranger living on the other side of the world. How this comes about is genuinely refreshing, as one good guy, in it for the music, helps out a struggling good woman, who survived child abuse but has not given up on herself and fights to make her dreams come true. The film's highlight is when she gets over a million hits on YouTube and is invited by Kutiman to perform to a friendly audience in Israel's national theater, Habima, in Tel Aviv, where she wows everyone singing her featured  song “Give It Up”.

Israeli director-writer Ido Haar ("9 Star Hotel"/"Probation Time") directs this wonderful feel-good story with tenderness, capturing the soul of this uplifting story and what it means for the genial talented singer with metal teeth braces, someone so easy to root for, to get such a break to show her talent to the world.

REVIEWED ON 11/19/2016       GRADE: B

Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"

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