Miles Ahead (PG) **
By Alan Samuel
Affliction turns a performer into a not too nice person in Miles Ahead. Told as a wild drama this penetrating look into the disjointed life of master musician Miles Davis unearths a lot of the inner turmoil raging inside this talented man's head. Told with zeal and passion this Sony Pictures Classics release will appeal to fans of music and history which will be Music to their discerning ears at the International Village Cinemas
Out of every pore Don Cheadle aces the part of this much troubled man. Besides starring as the lead in this drama Cheadle makes his directorial debut here. It's a good one. Fingerprints of our actor are on every frame in this piece as Cheadle wrote and also produced this candid bio that explores a troubles time in the jazz sensations' life.
Jazz is front and centre to Davis's journey. Flamboyant and on the passionate side we see a break with convention as the already famed and acclaimed musician winds up in a downfall. Candid depiction of drug use shows a man on the ropes. It takes a determined reporter from Rolling Stone out to get a scoop to open up the tortured soil of this musical icon who for years has been holed up away from the limelight .
Impeccable casting by way of reliable Ewan McGregor sees the pair come together, rather reluctantly, and embark on a wild goose chase over a missing recording. Part of Miles' trouble relate to racial tensions of the time, which are very well revealed, as well as a soulful jades romance with a beautiful dancer.
Full marks go to the wonderful concert footage and the street-smart violence that propels a once proud creative giant into becoming a two bit hustler who likes to use his restrained temper to make his point. Good music, good acting and a lot of soul go into making Miles Ahead. an effective look into the personal life of a legend and the external forces that threaten to being him down for good.