|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)|
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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