In 2009, the documentary "It Might Get Loud" directed by David Guggenheim ("Gossip", "An Inconvenient Truth") made its way through the various film festivals.
The documentary was created to highlight the electric guitar, so what best than to feature three iconic electric guitar musicians: Jimmy Page (The Yard Birds, Led Zeppelin), The Edge ("U2') and Jack White (White Stripes, The Raconteurs). Each men with different musical backgrounds and from different countries and get to know how they became passionate for the electric guitar, learning of their musical inspirations, revisiting areas where they first became involved in their bands, footage of them performing live (with vintage footage) and their approach to music, what goes behind-the-scenes when they are writing songs and much more.
The documentary captures these musicians up-close and personal but also what happens when you bring these three musicians together with their instruments and what kind of music they come up with together.
VIDEO & AUDIO:
"It Might Get Loud" is presented in 1080p High Definition (1:78:1). The picture quality is fantastic. The documentary was shot in HD and aside from the vintage footage and old photos, the modern footage was shot entirely in HD and the amount of detail is just wonderful. You literally see the detail in some of the vintage instruments. For example, in one scene, Jack White performs a song on the piano and you can see the rugged look of the old piano. Especially later on as he performs on an older guitar.
You do see quite a bit of grain on some of the stock footage and of course, older vintage footage is not exactly going to be the best looking on Blu-ray but for the most part, picture quality is quite solid for the modern sequences of this documentary. Skin tones are natural, blacks are nice and deep. Some modern scenes has its share of low light noise and I did notice certain scenes with occasional dust but for the most part, picture quality is solid!
Audio quality is presented in English, Portuguese 5.1 DTS-HD MA and Spanish 5.1. Lossless audio is fantastic! From when you first hear Jack White messing around with a guitar, that the electric guitar comes out quite clear through the front channels. But when you start hearing Jimmy Page and The Edge play and the followed by Jack White and the various bands, you can't help but be impressed about the clarity of the instruments.
I can't tell you that by watching these guys play, especially when Jimmy Page, The Edge and Jack White just sat together and then started jamming, you can't help but get goose bumps. Absolutely fantastic! Especially the final improvisation scene with all three men just jamming. Just brilliant! There was no rehearsal, these three guys just start jamming in unison. Awesome!
Subtitles are in English, English SDH, Spanish, Portuguese and Arabic.
"It Might Get Loud" comes with the following special features featured in Standard and High Definition. English Stereo and subtitles in Portuguese in Spanish and French. Included are:
* Audio Commentary -- Audio commentary by Director Davis Guggenheim, Producer Lesley Chilcott and Producer Thomas Tull. An informative commentary with good insight on what happened behind-the-scenes and what the filmmakers wanted to accomplish.
* Toronto Film Festival Press Conference --(38:26) Q&A footage from the Toronto Film Festival Press Conference featuring Director Davis Guggenheim, Producer Thomas Tull and Lesley Chilcott and the three musicians: Jimmy Page, The Edge and Jack White.
* Deleted Scenes--(26:06) Featuring the following eleven deleted scenes: Jimmy Page plays Acoustic, Four Sticks on Acoustic, Kashmir, Strings, Theremin, Nicknames, The Edge plays "Stairway to Heaven", The Edge's Sound Check, I Fought Army's, Seven Nation Army, Deleted Animation.
* Theatrical Trailer - (2:26) Original theatrical trailer for "It Might Get Loud".
An incredible and amazing documentary.
For anyone who enjoys rock n' roll especially these talented guitarists such as legend Jimmy Page, The Edge and Jack White will love this film. I was pretty amazed about how enjoyable this documentary turned out to be. Learning about their passion for the electric guitar, playing music, learning about their past and also footage of their bands (vintage footage of Led Zeppelin and U2) was pretty awesome.
But what really made things much more enjoyable was watching "It Might Get Loud" on Blu-ray. The film was shot in HD and the detail was just amazing. From the old vintage instruments, you literally see the age on them and the various locations where the documentary were shot looks quite impressive. The lossless audio was fantastic and to hear the three perform and hear the guitar so crystal clear and so well-defined through your home theater is quite amazing.
This documentary goes beyond just enjoying the music and historic information from Page, The Edge and White, you also get to see other classic footage of artists and bands that these musicians enjoyed. Seeing 1930's Blues artists to punk bands such as The Clash and the Ramones was pretty awesome. But there are some deep thoughts from the musicians that you can't help but listen. This is probably one of the most personal rock documentaries as we see the thought process behind the music, their first instruments, the challenges they faced earlier in their career or at a young age and more.
I know there are some people who wish there was more music and less talk but personally, I was amazed by hearing their stories. Yes, I enjoy listening to their music but to tell you the truth, aside from listening to their music, I never knew the personal side to these men. Director Guggenheim let these men do their thing and I know some wish there was more prodding by the director but this was a different type of documentary that Guggenheim wanted to accomplish and so, it's less about ego's or personal clashes, it's all about the love of music. So, I found this documentary to be quite fascinating and just highly entertaining.
Also, the special features were just enjoyable to watch. The fact that these three musicians allowed the filmmakers to get up close and capture the personal side of them was quite amazing and when all is done, the special features showcase some enjoyable scenes as Jimmy Page plays the guitar and The Edge and Jack White are just in awe by the legend. You can tell that these musicians savored the moment, especially when the three start jamming with Jimmy Page while he plays "Kashmir".
Overall, if you are a rock musician or a fan of any of these talents or the bands they are part of, "It Might Get Loud" is a magnificent documentary worth owning on Blu-ray.
"It Might Get Loud" on Blu-ray definitely receives my highest recommendation!
on April 23, 2011
My daughter found this DVD for me. I did not know the film existed.
Led Zeppelin, U2, and White Stripes together? Not quite, but nearly. Jimmy Page, The Edge, and Jack White meet for some `talk' and a session. The result is enriched by clips of music by the 3 bands, plus some of their influences. Something like a United Nations of rock music. The 3 guitarists are from different countries (England, Ireland, and the US), and since they are also of 3 different `generations', they have slightly different stories to tell.
Page, of my generation, and one of the stars of my favorites Led Zeppelin (up on top together with the Stones), has most to tell in terms of rock history. I would have loved to see more Yardbirds here.
In comparison, The Edge has a shorter history, but a much more political one, with U2's exposure to the times of Irish terrorism and clashes with the British forces of order. The Edge is also the most technical one of the three.
White, the youngest, draws heavily on his blues roots, playing old records, and showing the simplicity of a basic approach (e.g. building a `guitar' with a coke bottle).
The result? Ear candy for rock fans. Is it a good movie? No way. Too fragmented, too many snippets. It is like appetizers for main course, many of them. Can I give it less than 5 stars? No way. It is too much fun to let any dissatisfaction crawl in. Yes, it might have been done better. Imagine a 5 hours concert or clips of the 3 bands...
For me, Led Zeppelin is tops, and I like White Stripes very much, while U2 reaches me only sometimes. You see that there is no full balance here. And anyway, I don't do music reviews.
on November 5, 2009
When I heard this documentary was out, I was itching to see it and then I got delayed. I started getting worried but I checked the theater and they still had it running once a day. HURRAY I wouldn't miss it and was going that day. THE GUITAR GENIUSES WERE PLAYING & I WAS SEEING THEM! And let me tell you, it was everything I expected and MORE!
I am a longtime U2 fan and WHO ISN'T a Led Zeppelin fan?? Jack White is kind of new to me, but the film is going for past, present and future generations of rock guitar expertise and that is exactly what is achieved. As another reviewer expressed, it is quite a thing to see the faces of Edge & White marveling at what Page is talking about, playing etc. He IS the GOD up there in the trio, who can make the guitar do things no one else I've ever heard yet do since Page has run his fingers across guitar strings. NO ONE. There are many, many truly talented guitar players out there who I would include in a list WITH Page, but Page set the bar HIGH ENOUGH for all these other players to try and reach for; he made them want to be THAT GOOD. And a small handful ARE that good. BECAUSE of Page.
Now I've heard people diss Edge, saying he wasn't much a guitar player etc. Well, I'm a HUGE HUGE U2 fan and so I ALREADY know what Edge can do and how he does it. He creates multiple guitar parts for one song; he hears it all in his head, uses several guitars in one song, and blends all the parts together to combine an AMAZINGLY masterful blend of guitar parts to express himself in JUST ONE SONG! He, like a symphony writer, hears all the parts of what he wants to write and with his guitars and MASSIVE pedal board, creates magnificent sounds that are TRULY UNIQUE and unmatchable by anyone else in rock today. AND ONE MORE THING: Edge CAN DO A ROCKIN' MAD GUITAR SOLO ANYTIME HE WANTS TO.......his skills are mad crazy.
Jack White - that opening sequence of him making that scant guitar is something else........truly poetic and his scenes are proof of what is yet to come and of how much he has already done. I wasn't as familiar with his work as I was with the other but I knew who the White Stripes were and WOW are they great. Dude is most righteously talented and for a young man, has a keen interest and understanding of the blues. That usually takes years to possess/acquire. But he already has it. He has proven he can spread his talent across many different bands, but I think it would befit him to settle down and suit up with one and let it rock. He did look truly awe-inspired in watching Page & Edge (not just patronizing - he seemed genuine) and looked to be soaking it all up. These guys have made it to the BIG SHOW!! And I am sure that is where Jack would surely like to be at some point. He has time to experiment now; but to be a master, you have to get your sound and rock it out like there's no tomorrow. I am sure he will.
Like the others, I did not want this to end. Seeing them all play together was LIKE A DREAM. And do it on slide......oh wow, what a moment. Hearing Edge tell them all, "no it's a B Minor" (again to all the Edge nay-sayers, the dude knows music) as they are jamming together, I mean, this is a "never going to happen again" moment and it was a "goose bump" moment watching as they all sit together with instruments in hand, taking turns or playing together, eyes riveted on one another. I can tell they all had fun making this - there was JOY in there eyes and in their music. There was JOY IN ME.
If you love these guys, if you love guitars, if you love rock music - GET THIS!!!
What I really liked best about this documentary was that its maker really probed these three musicians endlessly about their creativity. He was dogged about finding their inspirations and their stories from the earliest days. He unearthed little known facts, which might strike one as trivia at first, but then you realize that without those idiosyncratic tics, they might not be the people they are today.
For example, Page went to art school in addition to everything else he's done. He just couldn't live if he didn't try painting, drawing, graphic design, etc., in addition to everything else he was doing in music. White grew up in a lower class section of Detroit, where he was one of the few whites, in a family of ten kids. Very few people wanted to play musical instruments in that area. They all wanted to perform rap. Yet he had so much musical equipment in his very small bedroom that he had to sleep on a foam rubber mat at an angle on the floor. The Edge is the only politically motivated one but he is in such a band, U2, with the kids he met in grade school. He takes us back to his school.
The above is just a very small sampling of what the director manages to unearth about these three musicians. I found it utterly fascinating. One other thing the director did is drop entirely the personal lives of these three as far as wives, ex-wives, girlfriends, children, etc., For all we know by the end, all three are single and childless. (I know this isn't true but from other sources.) This omission was great as there was never the temptation to veer into tabloid fodder with this material.
Visit my blog with link given on my profile page here or use this phonetically given URL (livingasseniors dot blogspot dot com). Friday's entry will always be weekend entertainment recs from my 5 star Amazon reviews in film, tv, books and music. These are very heavy on buried treasures and hidden gems. My blogspot is published on Monday, Wednesday & Friday.
on March 21, 2010
I enjoyed this video mostly because Jimmy Page was featured. When I first heard about this production and of what guitarists it featured, I didn't understand how either The Edge or Jack White could stand on a stage next to Jimmy. I wish Paul Gilbert, Jake E. Lee, Doug Aldrich, Gary Moore, Audley Freed, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, David Gilmour, Eric Johnson, Eddie Van Halen (if he could stay clean) or any number of other true guitarists for the guitarist community could have been featured rather than Edge or Jack. Don't get me wrong; I like U2's music and appreciate the unique quality of The Edge's style but his playing could never be considered in the same league as that of Pagey. For the most part, I enjoyed Edge's parts in this film, particularly his modesty in afirming that his array of effects has much to do with his sound. Seeing he and Mr. White react to Jimmy whipping out a couple of timeless Zeppelin riffs was very cool and I appreciate the subtle respect paid to JP by both of these professional musicians. I appreciated Jack White as an artist a great deal more after seeing this film. Anyone in today's creative vacuum who has the guts to revisit late 60s to 70s blues guitar style gets at least some of my attention. It's pretty hard to come up with new creative techniques on guitar today but this film features a couple of Jack's creative 'inventions' that really impressed me. Quotes by all three musicians are thoughtful and encouraged me as a guitarist to enjoy the music creating experience for what it is at the moment and for what it does for it's creators emotionally. Led Zep received a great deal of criticism, especially with the first 4 albums and this was revisited. During different segments, the 3 play each other's music together and seem to have a good time with it. Each tells what his influences were when they were young and much of it was surprizing to me. If you are a fan of late 60's, 70s or 80s rock, any blues based rock or of the bands represented by any of these guitarists, you'll want to own this disk. I rented it first only because it appeared at the rental store when I had a free rental coming to me. Even after watching it twice, I had to buy it to keep in my library. I thank each of these musicians and those like them who enrich our lives with the sharing of thier talent and compositional talent.
I missed this film when it came through the local theaters but am glad I got to to see it on DVD. Sure, the screen is smaller but 1) You can go back and see the parts that you you want to see (and even zoom in on the performers fingers) and 2) You get to see the "Deleted scenes". (Read on about those.)
This documentary was directed by Davis Guggenheim who won lots of awards for directing Al Gore in "An Inconvenient Truth". (To make Al Gore seem interesting for two hours, talking about global warming was a challenge that Guggenheim overcame.)
The premise is that the Director got three electric guitar geniuses from differejnt cultures and generations in to room to reminisce and play together. Jimmy Page (British) is the elder statesman here; The Edge from U2 (Irish) comes next in the age-line; and Jack White of The White Stripes (Detroit, MI) brings it into the 21st Century.
What I expected to see was a "super session" in one room for 98 minutes. But that's not what you get. The Director used this "first time meeting" as a jumping off point to follow the careers of the three men, jumping from one to the other. There really isn't much footage in the film of the meeting and no complete songs are ever presented. (If you read the credits there are nearly 100 (!) songs excerpted for the soundtrack. There's lots of archival clips of Page in his various bands and Edge and White in their respective musical collaborations as well. But it's still riveting.
The DVD includes commentary by the Director and Producer (none of the musicians included) and a 30-minute Press Conference in Toronto that does include Page, White and Edge. But then there ar4e the "Deleted Scenes" - 12 of them totaling 26 minutes. It's here we see Page play acoustically for a full song, some on stage jamming and questioning each other and even a section where Edge reveals how he - and Bono - got their unique names. (Why wasn't this in the film?).
This is a min-history of the electric guitar from the mid 1960s to the present and anyone who plays electric guitar will get something from it.
on June 5, 2010
As a guitarist and a huge fan of all three players this documentary focuses upon, I was ultimately disappointed in the film. I really can't understand the large number of 5-star reviews. Leading up to the release of the film, I was thrilled by the concept; these are definitely three iconic guitarists of their respective generations, and getting them together seems a brilliant idea. Unfortunately, other than getting them together, the film's creators don't seem to have had much of an idea of what to do with them once the cameras started rolling. With no interviewer serving to spur on discussion, Page, Edge, and White are left to figure out how to interview each other, and sadly don't do a very good job. It's very telling that so much of the film is actually recaps of each individual's career, with interviews done away from the "summit" that is ostensibly the centerpiece of the film. Given how uninteresting the actual summit footage is, it's really not surprising. There is a lot of awkward silence, abortive attempts to teach each other songs, and muddled discussion that never really goes anywhere. There are some interesting moments, such as when they are jamming a bit on Zep's "In My Time of Dying" and Edge takes a pretty cool solo... but they are outnumbered by the moments of awkwardness. This reaches its height when, at the end of the film, they manage to work up a rendition of "The Weight" by The Band, of all things. Utterly bizarre.
I also did not get the impression that the film's creators really knew a whole lot about guitar, which is allegedly the subject matter of the whole film. There's a sequence titled "Jimmy's Strat" which details Page's first electric guitar purchase. Page is so iconically linked to the Les Paul (and so rarely linked to the Fender Strat) that this just seems ridiculous. There's also this whole series of scenes featuring White and his 8-year-old self (i.e., a child actor), which, while kind of novel, seems gimmick-y and out of place. Again, I think it is patently obvious that there was little salvageable footage of the three together, and thus the film needed padding.
While not a total loss, the film is far less than it could have been. There's really nothing insightful here for guitarists, and the biographical info will be well known to anyone who is already a dedicated fan of the respective subjects. It was certainly worth a Netflix rental, but even as a massive Zep and U2 fan (and slightly less massive fan of White's), I am really in no hurry to pay money for this.
The filmmakers obviously wanted a rock guitar "My Dinner with Andre." What they ultimately produced is, at best, three unfinished episodes of "Behind the Music" crammed on to one disc.
Like most people learning the guitar, one of my earliest ambitions was to be able to play the intro to Stairway To Heaven, as played by Jimmy Page. So, if you're into the guitar at all, this dvd is well worth exploring.
It opens with Jack White constructing his own guitar from makeshift elements, and as it turns out The Edge as a kid also created his own electric guitar. Jimmy Page got his first guitar when the previous owner of the house his family moved into left a guitar behind.
As you get further into this movie it gets more fascinating, as we explore the music the musical background, the development and creative influences of these three outstanding guitarists. Particular highlights for me are the facial expressions and fascination of the other two as Jimmy Page plays the opening riff on Whole Lotta Love, and watching The Edge through the use of effects magic playing Pride, and giving the impression through the echo effect of playing two different instruments. I also enjoyed Jack White's rendition of Take The Elevator, and he seems to be somehow channeling Johnny Depp. Jimmy also explains Kashmir and gives a quick demo.
I found my admiration for Jimmy Page in particular grew because not only is he a guitar great, he is also a cool guy. The Edge impressed me with his dedication to pursuing the perfect sound, and reminded me of Les Paul in that respect in Les Paul - Chasing Sound, a movie I highly recommend. Jack White impressed me with his passion for the guitar.
I also enjoyed the concert footage excerpts particulary the soloing on the double neck guitar on Stairway To Heaven.
If you're like me you'll be impressed by the passion and dedication and talent of these three. Some of the most interesting bits are in the deleted scenes and extended footage.
I hope you found this helpful, and think you will enjoy it.
on January 1, 2010
I watched this dvd just this AM and what I saw was three important things to me that defined the movie.
1.Jack White IS talented and ,should be given more credit than he has gotten over the last few years.
2.The Edge is better at his craft then what I assumed.Not being a big U2 fan I was ready to blow him off as a guitar player.Not bad,not great but,not bad.
3.Jimmy Page is the man always has been ....always will be.
In watching the 3 converse on the sound stage in Cailf.was interesting to say the least.Jack seemed more at ease than Edge.Jimmy came off as relaxed and interesting.I found Jack W.kinda odd but,talented.Edge seemed oddly out of place.I don't know if he really belonged there.He seemed a little nervous in front of Jimmy.In fact I kept noticing that The Edge would rarely speak directly to Jimmy only to Jack.?
The footage of Jimmy as a hip young gunslinger in the session days of London was treat to see, brief though it may have been.see.It seemed as if all The Edge wanted to talk about was how bad it was in Ireland when he lived there. Jack'geniune awe and love of Son House was moving. He spoke of him in a reverence almost.Nice.
Jimmy putting on an old 45 and step by step going thru the air guitar motions was like that Visa card commerical...."priceless".His face just lite up.
Oh yea when Jimmy starts playin' Whole lotta' love" and the 2 just looking on in awe as if to say ..."holy S@%& this is Jimmy Page playing for us."
My favorite part however for me was the footage of Zeppelin at Headley Grange and,that Jimmy went back and walked amoung the ghosts of the past as it were.
I think another reviewer put it best when they said Jack W. and The Edge were outgunned.Not having talent, charisma, intellect, respect or money to come close to Jimmy Page.
I really enjoyed the film I belive the lack of sparks between the 3 was evident.If you are fan of any of these guitar players you owe to yourself to watch.
Lastly if Jimmy Page questions wheather you are playing in the right key...you might want to admint to being in the wrong Key.
on October 20, 2010
This move was disappointing to me. For starters, I found the combination of those three personalities to be odd, but not in a good way. In Jimmy Page, you have a genuine rock legend and a gentle soul. In The Edge, you have a quiet, intellectual, journeyman musician who has nothing to prove to anyone, but is visibly in awe of what Jimmy has accomplished. Finally, we have Jack White, the pure embodiment of pretentiousness. It was a real eye-rolling moment when Jack made a strong anti-technology statement about music, just moments before they showed Edge's huge rack full of guitar gear. It was immediately apparent that Jack and The Edge had very little common ground musically, and were merely trying to remain civil with each other in order to make it though the day. The whole thing felt contrived and would have been a total failure, if not for Jimmy's good humor.
I think the producers should have focused more on the segments of each player individually and completely eliminated any scenes with all three together. Better yet, they should have simply made a two-hour movie about Jimmy Page. THAT would be a must-see.