Skozi življenjsko zgodbo film režiserja Taylorja razkriva razpoloženje, navdih in ustvarjalnost "botra soula" Jamesa Browna, na glasbenem potovanju od njegovega otroštva do statusa enega najvplivnejših sodobnih zabavljačev.Po eni njegovih najslavnejših popevk naslovljeni film prinaša življenjsko zgodbo legendarnega pevca, zabavljača in umetnika Jamesa Browna. Chadwick Boseman upodobi "botra soula" v biografskem prikazu, ki sega od njegovega otroštva ter skromnih glasbenih začetkov v Georgiji do vrhunca kariere, ko je dodobra pretresel glasbeno prizorišče z inovativnimi prijemi, nalezljivimi skladbami, hipnotičnimi plesnimi gibi ter osupljivimi nastopi. Zgodba režiserja Tata Taylorja se med drugim posveča tudi Brownovim težavam z zakonom in mamili na samem višku mednarodne slave.
On route to the stage, singer James Brown recalls a life with a turbulent childhood where music was his only constructive release for his passions. A chance demonstration of that in prison led to a new friend who helped get him out and into a musical career. With his fire and creative daring, Brown became a star who defiantly created new possibilities in show business both on and behind the stage in face of racism and conventional thinking. Along the way, James would also become a peacemaker who redefined and raised the African-American community's feeling of self-worth when it was needed most. However, those same domineering passions would lead James Brown alienating everyone around him as his appetites became ever more self-destructive. Only after he hit rock bottom with a serious mistake does Brown realize what he needs to do make his life as the Godfather of Soul truly worthwhile.