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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Music > Fado > Portugal > Amalia Rodrigues - The Spirit Of Fado

Amalia Rodrigues – The Spirit Of Fado


Picture: C     Sound: C+     Extras: C+     Documentary: B-



Amalia Rodrigues was a major diva in her time in Portugal and was part of a vocal genre movement known as Fado, which translates to fate.  Amalia Rodrigues – The Spirit Of Fado is an interesting, though too short, documentary that tells us of her phenomenal success, where it took her and how it lasted for most of her lifetime.


The notes say that it was for half a century, yet too many people in the U.S. have not heard of her and with music artists from as late as the 1970s being forgotten, this is a valuable document about an important performer who was influential and stood for a sense of class that has been lost too much no matter what the country.  I wish it would have been longer, but this is better than never having heard of her or never hearing her music, so music fans and scholars should catch this one.


The 1.33 X 1 image is a little shaky, even for a documentary, with some materials fuzzier than usual and maybe even some PAL/NTSC conversion issues.  The mix of black and white, color, film and tape is still pretty good considering Miss Rodrigues’ archive may not be getting top notch treatment.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 sound is simple stereo at best, with many of her recordings monophonic.  Extras include 10 audio and 10 video music performances by Rodrigues, which work out fine stand-alone.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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