As Only She Can, Sade's 'The Big Unknown' Bottles A Resolute Sadness

Nov 12, 2018

We are all Viola Davis, staring out of a window, crying and listening to Sade.

"The Big Unknown" will feature in the end credits to Widows, the Steve McQueen-directed thriller about four women who pay a criminal debt left behind by their dead husbands. The lyric video pairs the aching, slow-burning ballad with scenes from the film, as its characters cope and make plans to, well, kick some ass. But as Sade does, "The Big Unknown" bottles a sadness that is both overwhelming and resolute, determined to make the world right, but understands that grief forever breaks our bodies and souls.

"I'm just trying to hold on / I'm falling in the dark below / I feel I'm falling in the big unknown," Sade sings. "There's no fire and flame on this cold, cold plane / No way to measure my pain."

This is the second song that Sade has contributed to a soundtrack in 2018 (the first being "Flower of the Universe" for Ava DuVernay's A Wrinkle in Time).

"It was an honor to work with such a legend," Steve McQueen says. "Sade is an incomparable talent and incredible artist who so rarely releases new material, but luckily the original series of Widows had deeply resonated with her."

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit