The High Note Sings on Bluray

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray/DVD and Digital from director Nisha Ganatra and Universal Pictures Home Entertainment is the mix of music that leads to THE HIGH NOTE.

Maggie Sherwoode (Dakota Johnson) is the personal assistant for the iconic singer Grace Davis (Tracee Ellis Ross) but her dream is to be a music producer. Taking some of Graces’ music and tweaking it to give it a greater sound, manager Jack Robertson (Ice Cube) is furious about it. So much so that he tells Maggie is she wants to be a producer, go find someone not Grace to produce.

That is when she finds David Cliff (Kelvin Harrison Jr.), a singer/songwriter who she believes has something special in his music. Finding time in between her duties to Grace and hanging out with roommate Katie (Zoe Chao), Maggie works with Cliff and they make plans to record. But Maggie isn’t being quite honest with Grace or Cliff and it starting to cause a strain.

But she isn’t the only one holding a bit of the truth back and when everything comes crashing down, it’s time for everyone to come clean so that the music can go on!

Johnson as Maggie gets a chance to move onto a commercial role and does it well. This isn’t a huge stretch in character, but Johnson makes it interesting, fun and reinforcing the push toward one’s biggest goal. For Maggie it is a chance to have the dream job that she is good at but can’t shake the “assistant” tag stuck to her. Johnson also gets a chance to step up to the mic in a very STAR IS BORN moment.

Ross as Grace Davis is a diva to the last. Outwardly she is stylish and gets the job done on stage, inwardly she is being pushed in several directions thinking that perhaps her performing has reached its end point. Ross is funny and at the same time if she is upset, trust you will know it. Ice Cube as manager Robertson is enjoying the good life that being Grace’s manager provides and also doesn’t have a problem voicing his opinion. The problem is that his opinion clashes with what Grace wants and he doesn’t seem to see that.

Harrison Jr. as Cliff plays in small venues but Maggie sees and hears something bigger in his voice. Being convinced he is good enough seems to be Cliff’s biggest worry and trusting that he has a chance to make it big is something he doesn’t see – until Maggie. He starts to discover that what he loves to do is in Maggie’s hands. Harrison Jr. gives his character heart and a voice to mesh with the story so well.

Chao as Katie is a doctor who supports Maggie in her own unique way with a self-proclaimed job to keep her friend centered. Shout out to June Raphael as Gail because she is one whacky character who sees the world in a unique way mixed with a little air headedness and a love for leftovers. She made me laugh a lot.

Other cast include Eugene Cordero as Seth, Marc Jackson as Alec, Eddie Izzard as Dan Deakins, Jonathan Freeman as Martin, Kenwood Anderson as Hanky, Sonal Shah as Sunshine, Diplo as Richie Williams, Uttera Singh as Theresa, Ross Partridge as Bennett, Rupak Ginn as Ryan Deniz Akdeniz as Spencer, Ben Lewis as Chad, Jeffery Self as Josh and Bill Pullman as Max.

Universal Pictures Home Entertainment has just added an amazing film to their library and making it available for us to all experience and re-experience in our own home theaters. There are films of every genre available from scary to drama to family films. For more of what they have to offer please visit

The Special Features include Deleted Scenes, The Dream Team: Inside the Creation of THE HIGH NOTE – a behind-the-scenes story of how the film came to life-including screenwriter Flora Greeson’s story and experience as a real Hollywood assistant; how filmmakers created the look of the film; the musical team behind the original tracks; and some of the iconic Los Angeles locations.

Also included are Making a Legend: The Grace Davis Story – Tracee Ellis Ross embodies the character Grace Davis, a superstar struggling to stay relevant in the ever-changing music industry, Featuring behind-the-scenes footage of Tracee as she ‘becomes’ Grace – in a recording studio, on stage, and at home – we’ll learn what it takes to become a musical legend, and LIKE I DO: Original Song Music Video.

THE HIGH NOTE is a story of what we want to do, what we think we can do and the emotions that can sometimes get in the way. All of the characters, well, maybe with the exception of Ice Cube’s Robertson, are insecure about their own abilities. Throughout the film it is clear that when those insecurities get cornered, the go-to emotion is destructive.

When the music flows it is so lovely and the mention of so many greats that have made music what it is today was amazing. As a true Nina Simone fan, hearing her name thrown out there brought a big smile to my face.

Since we all can’t go to a concert or see music live, what better substitute for now then a film that talks music, acts music and brings music into our homes with THE HIGH NOTE.

In the end – you’ve got to start at the bottom to take it to the top!



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About the Author

Jeri Jacquin

Jeri Jacquin covers film, television, DVD/Bluray releases, celebrity interviews, festivals and all things entertainment.