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Charles Mingus: Triumph of the Underdog (1997)

Cast: Dannie Richmond, Charles Mingus, Charles Mingus, more...
Director: Don McGlynn, Don McGlynn
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Rating: Not Rated
Studio: Shanachie
Genre: Documentary, Music, Documentary, Music
Running Time: 78 min.
Languages: English
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Synopsis
The focus of filmmaker Don McGlynn's fourth documentary on a musical figure is arguably one of the greatest composers of the 20th century, Charles Mingus. The mad/genius, poet/musician forever changed American popular music and jazz with his classical influence, devotion to Duke Ellington, and superb musicianship. In bittersweet tributes, fellow musicians, musical scholars, and two wives recount the life of the gentle taskmaster, while performance footage fills most of the screen time. Though his reputation as an unpredictable, rather lost soul proves not totally inaccurate, some explanation is offered for the great mental hardship and physical suffering the artist endured during his brief tenure as a musical giant, all seemingly at the hands of his gift for music. ~ Denise Sullivan, All Movie Guide



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