Ray (2004) Film Review


Ray Charles was a huge success over many, many years in the music industry. He overcame poverty, blindness, racism and many years of drug addiction to gain and maintain his success. The film Ray covers his early years through to his time in rehab.

The film is structured with a variety of flashbacks and dreams where Ray is given advice from his mother on how to life a good and true life. At times, I found the flashbacks to be clunky and quite intrusive on the story. There is so much in the story, it could have easily just run chronologically  and been equally as engaging. Some filmmakers seem to think that they need to have twists or disjointed time to get the story across. Sometimes, they do, but sometimes it is really not needed. The life of Charles is quite interesting and inspirational, although I felt that the film ended just as we saw him overcoming his drug problems and I would have liked to see more of this. Than again, it was a very long film and so it probably just needed to end.

Ray won Oscars for Best Achievement in Sound Mixing and Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role (Jamie Foxx) and was nominated for Best Achievement in Costume Design, Best Achievement in Directing, Best Achievement in Film Editing and Best Motion Picture of the Year.