Recent Film/DVD Reviews

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Electric Church coverJimi Hendrix: Electric Church
Directed by John McDermott; original footage by Steve Rash
Showtime/Sony Legacy
In A Word: Jimi-licious

“[T]his is a rare pleasure indeed…. [Y]ou actually get to see Jimi playing his guitar, with no gratuitous cutaways to adoring audience members or distracted stagehands. So in the end I must give this uncovered artifact a hearty thumbs up.”

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4f721c72_ricki-and-the-flash (listings)Ricki and the Flash
Directed by Jonathan Demme
(TriStar/Sony Pictures)
In A Word: OK-ish

“Some good laughs leavened by fun yet believable bits of family drama…. A pleasant-enough diversion…. And the band (sans Streep) seriously rocks”

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Can't Stand Losing You coverCan’t Stand Losing You: Surviving The Police
Directed by Andy Grieve & Lauren Lazin
Bob Yari Productions
In A Word: Yawn

This documentary is based on Summers’ memoir, 2006’s One Train Later; hence the story has already been told…. [I]t rarely connects with the viewer with any dramatic crackle other than the footage of The Police performing on the 2007-’08 reunion tour.

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big-in-japan-tealBig in Japan
Directed by John Jeffcoat
In A Word: Delicious

“[A] near-seamless mix of light drama and gentle humor that is utterly charming and feels real to what the rock’n’roll experience is for a band.”

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AmyFilmPosterAmy
Directed by Asif Kapadia

“The film is a deft pastiche of footage… woven together brilliantly…. [H[er lyrics tell her life experiences and emotions straightforwardly and in painful detail. We are left exhausted, grieving and disgusted, haunted by what ifs.”

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kurt-cobain-montage-of-heck-posterKurt Cobain: Montage of Heck
Directed by Brett Morgen

“Aptly titled as a ‘montage,’ the documentary does gather and somewhat fit together enough fascinating puzzle pieces Cobain left behind to bring him back to us in a way his fans and rock music buffs might hope it would.”

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Wrecking Crew DVD coverThe Wrecking Crew
Directed by Denny Tedesco

“[T]he Wrecking Crew was the true starmaker machinery behind the popular song, and thanks to Denny Tedesco’s efforts to complete his labor of love, now the whole world knows it.”

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Doug Sahm movie posterSir Doug and the Genuine Texas Cosmic Groove
Directed by Joe Nick Patoski

“Patoski grabs the essential thread that explains Sahm’s prime directive in his life and music – which over the years ranged from the polka pop of ‘She’s About a Mover’ to big-band blues, country, psychedelic jazz, Tex-Mex, numerous shades of rock and combinations and variations thereof and more – which was ‘the groove.'”

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The-Ecstasy-of-Wilko-Johnson-Still-10-Courtesy-of-Essential-Arts-Entertainment-660x368 (crop)The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson
Directed by Julien Temple

“A rumination cum celebration of the double helix of life and mortality that pays evocative homage to cinema, literature, poetry, Shakespeare and rock’n’roll… that is at the same time both deadly serious and deliciously ecstatic.”

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lambertandstampposter (crop)
Lambert & Stamp
Directed by James D. Cooper

“[T]hey recognized the diamond in a beer-soaked rough and blustered their way into managing the band. And the rest is now, thanks to this insightful documentary… finally and finely detailed history.”

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