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Academy Award winner Jamie Foxx (Dreamgirls) stars as the one-of-a-kind innovator of soul who overcame impossible odds to become a music legend. Ray is the triumphant and remarkable story of one of America’s true musical geniuses, Ray Charles. From his humble beginnings in the South through his meteoric rise to the top of American music charts, Ray’s inspirational journey is a tale of hope, redemption and the power of the human spirit. “Ray is Electrifying” hails Peter Travers of Rolling Stone. Witness the incredible true story of a musician who fought harder and went further than anyone could imagine.
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I bought the DVD when first released from Amazon and now again on Blu Ray for an Excellent price just under $ 8 dollars and recently upgraded to a 65 inch Sony 4K TV with an Excellent picture , A film directed and intro by Taylor Hackford with an Excellent performance by Cast especially Jamie Foxx did such a great job acting and playing the piano just like the real Ray with special features and interview with the real Ray and Jamie Fox with complete music performances from the movie including Ray & Raelettes performing Hit The Road Jack , Stepping into the part , A revealing look at Jamie Foxx's transformation into Ray Charles including a Jam session between the actor and the real Ray , Ray Remembered : Friends & Fellow musicians remember Ray Charles . Feature commentary with director Taylor Hackford , A look inside Ray , The Filmmakers Journey , The Woman of Ray and Ray and American Story , Ray is an Excellent Movie for a Great Price .
Jamie, in his role as Charles, is remarkably like Brother Ray with his mannerisms, as if he had channeled the beloved legend's spirit and brought it to life on screen. The film chronicles Ray's rise to fame, with flashbacks of his childhood, the drowning death of his little brother and how he gradually lost his vision during those years. But it doesn't shy away from his dark side, nor does it paint him as a saint, either: his growing addiction to heroin and his shabby treatment of the people closest to him (his wife, mistresses, producers and management) are a big part of this movie. It does sugarcoat and embellish some things about Ray's life in the script, but that does not take away from the fact that Taylor Hackford's direction of Jamie and this film is simply a joy to watch, and is no doubt Oscar-worthy. The supporting cast is also very strong...newcomer Sharon Warren as Ray's mom Aretha, Kerry Washington as Della Bee, Ray's wife, and veteran actress Regina King as Margie are only a few of many powerful performances to take note of.
The DVD is packed with a lot of bonus features that are also thoroughly enjoyable: numerous deleted scenes (which you have the option of seeing individually or when viewing the film in its entirety - I don't recommend it, though - the editing is poor), extended musical performances and interviews with Ray's friends and admirers, and footage of Ray and Jamie together.
Before his death in June, 2004, Ray gave Jamie his personal seal of approval to portray him in the film, and that seemed to be the motivation that Jamie used to completely envelop himself in the role. If he's good enough for Ray, then he's good enough for me. Job well done, Mr. Foxx. I'll be pulling for you to take home that Oscar.