The Blues: Warming by the Devil's Fire

About performance

Film of the Alternative cinema: Authors' Collections series

USA, 2003

Runtime: 106 min

Director: Charles Burnett

Director Charles Burnett presents a tale about a young boy's encounter with his family in Mississippi in the 1950s, and intergenerational tensions between the heavenly strains of gospel and the devilish moans of the blues.

Says Burnett: “The sound of the blues was a part of my environment that I took for granted. However, as years passed, the blues slowly emerged as an essential source of imagery, humor, irony, and insight that allows one to reflect on the human condition. I always wanted to do a story on the blues that not only reflected its nature and its content, but also alludes to the form itself. In short, a story that gives you the impression of the blues.”

Performances in The Warming by the Devil's Fire
Big Bill Broonzy
Elizabeth Cotten
Reverend Gary Davis
Ida Cox
Willie Dixon
Lightnin' Hopkins
Son House
Mississippi John Hurt
Vasti Jackson
Bessie Smith
Mamie Smith
Victoria Spivey
Sister Rosetta Tharpe
Dinah Washington
Muddy Waters
Sonny Boy Williamson