Monday, May 27, 2002

101 101: This is a little after the event - by about ten years or so, but i finally wound up watching 101 last night, which is such a rubbish music film - the live stuff (which was probably the peak of Depeche Mode's creativity, or at least, just before it) broken up - as in *smashed to pieces* by linking stuff that swallows the whole movie and is, frankly, ropey - it's like DA Pennebaker had the standard stuff (band being interviewed by local radio; band playing pinball in dressing rooms; band sitting on coaches) and then thought "this is pretty dull - how can I make it seem better?" and a little light came on above his head, and he decided the way to go would be by adding in a load of stuff that was even duller. So, we get shots of the stage crew fretting over grass seed in the Pasadena Rose Bowl, and people couting t-shirt money, and a kind of proto-Real World with some fans going to see the gigs. Hello? Who are you? Why do we care?

Here's a tip for aspiring concert film makers: Band. Playing songs. If you must, a ten second shot of the exterior of the venue. No footage of the band being asked "Where does your crazy name come from?" by the drivetime jock in Tupelo. No shots of the band wandering round before the gig with their shirts off (unless its Shirley Manson), and certainly none after the gig. And, frankly: We don't care about the audience. We don't care if they've got difficult to maintain hairstyles, or if the had an interesting journey to the theatre, or if their relationship with their mother is strained. When we go to gigs, we avoid making eye contact with the strangers there - why would we want to suddenly hear about these people just because its a movie of a gig? No, thank you.

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