Ray | Chicago Reader


Taylor Hackford's epic biography of Ray Charles differs from other authorized Hollywood musical biopics in one striking detail: its subject, still alive when most of this was made, is almost never shown as a likable person (though reportedly this was even more true of the director's cut, now available on DVD). The script, by Hackford and James L. White, follows roughly the first half of Charles's 56-year career—until he got off heroin in the mid-60s—and then abruptly signs off, apart from a couple of pro forma nods to his virtue. We also get some flashbacks to a childhood trauma and his early struggle with blindness that are supposed to explain something or other. Jamie Foxx expertly captures the singer's mannerisms, and there are some knowing asides on the corruption of the music business. With Kerry Washington, Regina King, and Clifton Powell. PG-13, 152 min.



  • Jamie Foxx
  • Kerry Washington
  • Regina King
  • Clifton Powell
  • Aunjanue Ellis
  • Curtis Armstrong
  • Harry J. Lennix
  • Terrence Howard
  • Larenz Tate
  • Bokeem Woodbine
  • Sharen Warren
  • Richard Schiff
  • C.J. Sanders
  • Wendell Pierce
  • Chris Thomas King
  • David Krumholtz
  • Warwick Davis
  • Patrick Bauchau
  • Robert Wisdom
  • Denise Dowse
  • Thomas Jefferson Byrd
  • Rick Gomez
  • Kurt Fuller
  • Julian Bond
  • Kimberly Ardison
  • Renee Wilson
  • Willlie Metcalf
  • Mike Pniewski
  • Terrone Bell
  • Richard A. Smith
  • Gary Grubbs
  • Carol Sutton
  • Bill Breaux
  • Alex Van
  • Roland "Bob" Harris
  • Tom Clark
  • Afemo Omilami
  • Elizabeth Omilami
  • Vernel Bagneris
  • Fahnlohnee R. Harris
  • Michael Travis Stone
  • Eric O'Neal Jr.
  • Tequan Richmond
  • Matthew Benjamin
  • John Swasey
  • James Huston
  • Marc Lynn
  • Kyle-Scott Jackson
  • Todd J. Smith
  • Rutherford Cravens
  • Darnell Williams
  • Jedda Jones
  • Jeffrey Galpin
  • Michael Arata
  • Estella Denson
  • Jeffrey Glapin
  • Derrick Simmons
  • David Hash
  • Ralph Tresvant

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