Jimi: All Is by My Side

John Ridley
May 20, 2015

Everyone famous has to be discovered at some point in time. Jimi Hendrix was discovered in 1966 while playing guitar for a funky rock group in one of Manhattan's numerous clubs. Linda Keith, then girlfriend of Keith Richards, becomes captivated while Jimi plays and begins a frantic search to make him a star. She eventually lands Chas Chandler from the Animals as Jimi's new manager and whisks him away to London which is where, in the middle of the historical rock-and-roll scene, Jimi makes his mark on the music world and begins his journey to stardom.

Although this movie focuses less on his music than the drama he created in his personal life through love affairs, drug use and becoming famous, it still provides entertainment as viewers see how Jimi becomes the music icon we know him as today. Director John Ridley introduces important characters in Jimi's life such as his drummer Mitch Mitchell and bassist Noel Redding and gives background as to how Jimi's music evolved over a year that spanned 1966-67.

I found the film entertaining but slow at times. Not having a real in-depth of knowledge of Jimi's personal history, I felt the movie portrays him as a real person with normal struggles for someone living in the Sixties. He faced challenges with money, racism and jealousy and André Benjamin captured his human qualities wonderfully. This movie is best for fans of classic rock-and-roll and would be more suitable for teens and adults.

Reviewed by Library Staff