Social workers believe that showing the film to kids in a detention centre will help them understand the pitfalls of substance abuse
Amy, the heartbreaking documentary about the rise and fall of the late British popstar Amy Winehouse, was shown to 100 Thai kids in a bid to educate them about the dangers of alcohol and drug abuse. The Associated Press reports that the Thai Health Promotion Foundation and the Stop Drink Network screened the film to 100 Thai teens from a juvenile detention centre, hoping that the gritty, fly-on-the-wall nature of Asif Kapadia’s film – that focusses heavily on Winehouse’s losing battle with addiction – will act as a deterrent to Thai teenagers battling their own problems.
Kamron Cheducha of The Stop Drink Network told AP: "I think Amy’s story is a real story that reflects real problems in the society, especially among teenagers. When Amy felt too much pressured, she acted out and started drinking, but she was gifted and she found that gift. It’s not too late for the students to find their gifts and learn from her mistakes."
Amy is a wonderful film and while these Thai teens may have suffered hardships throughout their lives, it will be a different kind of experience to Winehouse’s, who was relentlessly hounded and stalked by a bloodthirsty media. There were times in her life when she couldn’t move for photographers, blinded by the constant flashing of paparazzi cameras.
However, Cheducha believes that there are parallels between the pressures. "These kids think the society labels them as drug addicts, alcohol addicts and criminals. When one hits rock bottom, it takes a lot of courage to fight the loneliness and criticism, like when Amy has to fight the media attention and people around her. Amy lost the battle, but these kids still have a chance."
Watch a deleted scene from the film below, showing Winehouse exploring New York just before she really took off.