Q&A with director Sacha Jenkins and composer Terence Blanchard, moderated by writer Larry Blumenfeld
A magisterial tribute to a founding father of jazz, Sacha Jenkins’s comprehensive documentary chronicles the life and times of legendary trumpeter Louis Armstrong, from his role in the birth of the musical genre he’d come to epitomize on to his later adventures in Hollywood as an indelible onscreen presence. Working from a wealth of archival footage, Jenkins constructs a stirring ode to Armstrong that historically situates his achievements and public image, deftly tracing how the cultural figure cut by Armstrong was formulated against a backdrop of unapologetic, systemic racism. And, appropriately, the film is scored by none other than Terence Blanchard, himself a latter-day titan of the trumpet, and the result is an utterly absorbing and moving homage to a true icon of American music. An Apple release.