I had heard about this movie when it came out but I was focused on watching the Matrix and the Lord of the Rings instead. I was also in rehearsal or in performance all the time. This was another movie that I was not ready to see even though it is about a kid in the same place I was when it came out. The movie is about a young high school kid who gets to go on tour with a struggling rock band in order to do an article for Rolling Stone Magazine. It feels way more plausible when you watch the movie. From the start of the movie they put out there how important music is. Music is what pulls us through life and it is music that we remember later in life, interwoven with the memories of our own lives. There are too many good performances here to name them all but I really liked Kate Hudson, Billy Crudup, Jason Lee, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Frances McDormand and especially young Patrick Fugit. The movie is a great road picture that is kind of what you expect but also not. It is definitely a great ode to the seventies and the great rock music that I grew up on because this was the music my parents embraced. I understand that this was semi-autographical for the director Cameron Crowe and it really shows. The movie is pretty funny but there is a lot of thoughtful drama in it as well. I really liked this movie and I definitely recommend it.
The Get Down
I remember the first Baz Luhrmann production I saw. I was in my freshman year of college and I still had time and the inclination to go out and be sociable with people outside of my major. The local student center had a print of Moulin Rouge and a couple of us walked over to go see it. I liked the movie that night but on subsequent viewings, I have liked the movie less. It feels like it is all flash and very little substance and its central message is kind of trite and obvious. So when I saw The Get Down advertised on Netflix I thought it would be like Glee mixed with Moulin Rouge but with Disco and Hip Hop. It is not that. The miniseries is very musical but it is not that often that the main characters are doing the singing. Their world is one where they are surrounded by music as there is some song playing about ninety percent of the time. Still, the emotion feels way more real in this one than in Moulin Rouge as everybody comes off as more human and people I would want to hang out with. In fact, after watching two parts, I feel like I have hung out with them. I do not usually think of subtle when it comes to Luhrmann but this was definitely much more subtle. The young actors who star in this are all so good as well. I am excited to see more and I definitely recommend it.
I never got to go to CBGB but I am sure I would not have enjoyed it as I do not really enjoy bars too much. Also, there was a dog that was allowed to crap on the floor there. What I definitely would have enjoyed was the music that was played inside the club. It was a pretty rough joint if legends and this movie are to be believed. Hilly Krystal (no relation to Billy Crystal) was a man who just wanted to start a Country Bluegrass and Blues bar but that never quite worked out for him. Instead, he ended up creating a club that helped birth the punk genre and furthered a lot of musician’s careers. The movie mostly centers on the creation of the club, the early days of The Ramones and Krystal’s managing of the Dead Boys. Alan Rickman plays Hilly and is great as the kind of curmudgeonly positive man who runs this club by hook or by crook. There are great performances by Rupert Grint, Stana Katic, Ashley Greene, Freddy Rodriguez and Donal Logue. The movie is just kind of a ride through a history. There is a central message that says if you help people, you create something beautiful and they just might be there when you need help. I definitely recommend it because it pays homage to a great genre of music.
Music of the Week:
Devil Doll – Why
– This week’s theme is “The Power of Music”
– I am almost done with Person of Interest Season 4
– I am halfway through Once Upon a Time Season 5
– I started watching Charmed again
– I watched a little more Narcos and it’s still good
– The TV Crimes podcast is genius
– Started listening to Harmontown again
– The soundtracks on all of these are excellent