Amy: The Girl Behind the Name


“Amy”, also known as “Amy: The Girl Behind the Name”, is a 2015 British documentary film, which tells the heart-breaking story of singer-songwriter Amy Winehouse. It shows where it all began, her rise to stardom, how she met her greatest love, how she slowly started to lose control and her descent into addiction to her death in 2011 at age 27, from alcohol poisoning. The documentary was produced partly in cooperation with her family and close friends, which gave director Asif Kapadia and his team access to archived footage and personal documentations. The film, therefore, contains never seen material and untold stories about the singer-songwriter. A short fragment of Amy, around age 14 at that point, goofing around with her friends, coming across like an ordinary teenager until she opens her mouth and starts singing “Happy Birthday”. Her voice already astonishing. The film won an Oscar only a few days ago for the best documentary.

A couple of months ago I wouldn’t have called myself a fan of this girl. Yes, I knew that Amy Winehouse had a great voice and some great songs, but I was one of the people that were blaming her for having drug problems. I didn’t feel any compassion and I wasn’t even trying to understand that everything is not that simple as it may look…

This movie just opened my eyes. I finally realized what a difficult life Amy has had. The intimate nature of the documentary really gives you the chance to get to know the real Amy better, her lovely witty character, the girl behind the name. At the same time, the film is rather provocative as it confronts the world with her tragic story and how almost everyone around her was watching her downfall. Being young and famous is hard, but it’s even worse when you have your own inner demons, when you don’t know how to cope with yourself… Her father left her and appeared only when she became an acknowledged singer. The love of her life was quite fatal and made a huge negative impact on her life. One of the biggest hits of her second and final album, “Back to Black”, is a bittersweet tribute dedicated to her destructive lover Blake Fielder-Civil. Of course, we can’t blame others for the things that happen to someone, but if you see that a person is weak, you should do your best no to ruin them…

A short fragment: Amy

“The world wanted a piece of her, and took it.”

I don’t want to be a spoiler, but the thing is that you really have to see this movie if you haven’t seen it yet. It will not only change your opinion about this beautiful singer Amy Winehouse, it will change your whole perspective on the lives of popular people. And it will make you think about your own life, about the good things you have and all of the things to be grateful for. It’s quite an emotional piece, so prepare for some tears and an evening full of deep thinking, contemplation and reflection.

Also, we can’t leave this without saying that the soundtrack was just beautiful and the whole movie was put together in a very pleasant way. You know how a song can make you cry or laugh? So, these songs are definitely the ones that make you emotional. And to feel the mood, just listen: 

  • Stronger than me (One of my most favorite live performances in the whole world!)
  • Body and Soul (Recorded together with Amy’s hero Tony Bennett)

And last but not least, to get you warmed up for the documentary: Trailer

By Laisvyda Andrejevaite and Pooja Guptar (first paragraph)


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