16 June 2017 (released)
16 May 2017
Directed by Nick Broomfield and Rudi Dolezal, ‘Can I Be Me?’ is an insight into the life of Whitney Houston, told by way of previously unreleased live footage and interviews with Whitney’s nearest and dearest; the title encapsulates the premise of the documentary – to what extent was Whitney inhibited from being her real self, or the person she wanted to be at least.
Introducing 1970’s gospel Whitney, whilst reminding us of the 1980’s pop starlet, much of the material is live filming was of her 1999 Word Tour that was credited as being her ‘last successful’ – aged 36, 13 years before her passing in 2102.
‘Can I Be Me’ presents some of the complexities Houston struggled to square; including her responsibility to look after the talent she regarded as god given, her honesty as an artist, her sexuality, her ability to be a good mother, wife, daughter, family bread-winner, substance misuse; she played a number of roles in what was a multifaceted and hugely complex life.
Broomfield’s presentation of Houston’s life is a documentary made with integrity, respect for the performers achievements and the legacy she’s left behind; the film is a celebration of Houston’s life, whilst sharing some incredibly intimate, and often moving, moments, of both the singer those who’ve survived her.