Why I Will NOT See The New Jimi Hendrix Biopic, and I Think We Should All Boycott It

I was skeptical but curious when I learned there’s a biopic about Jimi Hendrix coming out. The fact that there’s no actual Hendrix music in it made me wonder: why bother? After researching it further, I’m appalled and disgusted, and I’m sure I never want to see it. I don’t care whatever they may have gotten “right” – the whole thing is wrong because of one thing: the movie portrays Jimi Hendrix beating up his girlfriend Kathy Etchingham. It’s fiction, and Kathy Etchingham is alive and well and denouncing this horrible offense to Jimi Hendrix’s memory.

Why the hell would they do this? What, they think this makes the movie more marketable? They think they have a right to do that? Perhaps their lawyers inform them they have a legal right as it’s free speech etc., but as a Jimi Hendrix fan I reject that, they have no right if truth has any value! I have no idea what brain-damaged decision making process was behind this, but we can’t let it stand. Jimi was an absolute sweetheart, everyone who knew him says so.

Why take artistic license rewriting the life of someone as interesting and entertaining as Jimi Hendrix? And why in the name of all that is right, would you rewrite him as someone who was violent and abusive to his girlfriend? I don’t doubt Andre 3000 did a good job in the role. But the writers failed outright.

Jimi Hendrix did a fine job in his starring role as Jimi Hendrix in real life, a recent and great life, which ended way too soon. And look, this is not like some mystery man, this is not a Robert Johnson who is difficult to research. Hendrix’s life and career are very extensively documented in every kind of media. There are thousands of credible articles, interviews with his friends and family, books, footage, freakin’ postcards, this is just not a person you need to make stuff up about. What, he wasn’t interesting enough?? You have to make him VIOLENT to the woman he wrote “Foxy Lady” and “The Wind Cries Mary” about, to sell more TICKETS maybe?? Is nothing at all safe from stupid, heartless greed? The more I think about it, the more it makes me furious.

Don’t give ’em a nickel. I hope they get properly sued for character defamation or whatever might stick. I’m not a lawyer. But it’s Jimi, man.

If you want to see a good doc on the real Jimi, check out “Jimi Hendrix: Hear My Train A Comin” on Netflix. Listen to his records. Watch some live footage. Experience the real deal.

Update 7-12-2014:
I neglected to include, the title of the movie is: “All Is By My Side.”
Thanks Alan G. for the heads-up.

Author: Eric Din

Eric makes songs, records, and little forts for cats to play in. Founder/lifer in The UPTONES, guitarist, songwriter, music teacher and music curator, Eric blogs at ericdin.com except when he doesn't.

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