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No More To Say And Nothing To Weep For - An Elegy for Allen Ginsberg 1926-1997 / Patti Smith, Paul McCartney, Philip Glass, Peter Orlovsky (2006)

 NR |  DVD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, French, German, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Kultur Video
  • DVD Release Date: November 21, 2006
  • Run Time: 50 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000JGWD0U
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #420,010 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

A portrait of the American Beat poet, Buddhist and counter-cultural hero, who died in New York in 1997, this revealing documentary includes his last television interview as well as extraordinary footage of his final days. Participants include his family and friends, fellow poets and performers, Patti Smith and Paul McCartney. Composer and collaborator Philip Glass also appears and there is a rare interview with Ginsberg's life-long partner Peter Orlovsky.

Customer Reviews

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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An intimate and revealing picture of a legend December 20, 2006
This documentary presents us with Allen Ginsberg in a very intimate manner, and by the end of it, you feel as if you know more of the man for the experience. Poetry is always subjective, but seeing and hearing about his life and death from his own lips and those of the people who loved him gives us a deeper insight into what his words meant, and what they meant to so many. You don't have to be a poet to apprecaite this portrait of a counter-culture icon, but for the poets who do watch it, there are a lot of very exciting and interesting features in the show itself. Just hearing about the beginnings of the Beat movement, and watching Ginsberg act/react to William Buckley and the politics of the day is invigorating. There are several clips of Ginsberg reciting his work, as well as clips of other poets and his life partner reading his poems threaded throughout, which make a solid backdrop to the rare footage and interviews the producer has put together. Add to that the chance to hear from Ferlinghetti, Kerouac, Snyder, and a plethora of other amazing writers, and this 50 minute doc becomes a riveting experience that is sure to leave you with a deeper respect for Ginsberg and his work.

Unfortunately there are no special features on the disc, but the people and things happening on screen in the body of the film are more than worth while. I especially enjoyed Ginsberg jamming the short version of "Ballad of the Skeletons" with Paul McCartney, and Patti Smith reading a tribute poem. All in all, this one is well worth watching. Take it home and have a copy of the collected works nearby when you watch it, because afterwards you'll be wanting to dig down with some more of his work!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very little information within January 30, 2008
By JAV
I saw THE LIFE AND TIMES OF ALLEN GINSBERG DVD and a lot of that film ended up in this very short British TV version without any extras. I think that the over 8 hour DVD that this is paired with (85 minute film and over 6 hours of amazing extras) gives the viewers much more value for their time and money. If you buy both you are wasting your money in my opinion.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Ode To The OM Man February 1, 2010
If a rough dictionary definition of an elegy is a poem of lament and praises for the dead then this little documentary tribute to the seemingly very inelegant Allen Ginsberg is the correct term here in celebration of his life that ended in 1997. I have discussed in other entries the central role that Ginsberg played in both the "beat" literary movement of the 1950s and as the 'godfather' of the "hippie" countercultural movement of the 1960s. I have also mentioned the influence that he had over his fellow literary figures from the earlier period, Jack Kerouac, William Burroughs, Gary Snyder, Neal Cassady and too many others to list here properly (they in turn had great influence over him as more materials from this period, especially his "Journals", have come to publication).

I have also spoken about the influence and affect such classic Ginsberg poems as "Howl" and "Kaddish" had on me when I first read and then heard them. No, not at the time they were written and read, especially that famous (or infamous) reading of "Howl" in that `garage' in San Francisco in 1956. What could a ten year old boy from the housing projects make of a Whitmanesque plea to rethink the contours of modern American industrial society? Especially of a then pious Catholic boy in regard to a Jewish writer whose work bubbled over with swear words and talked about homosexuality in a positive sense, to boot. Moreover, he did not "speak" to me even during the height of the "hippie" movement but rather a little latter when I actually heard his work read both by himself and others. That essentially blues-driven rhythm that I believe influenced and drove his work finally meshed with the blues beat in my own head.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Back to the 60's February 17, 2008
I am a follower of Ginsberg, having discovered the poet in my soul in my later years. I was nutured by the beat poets as I struggled through the 60's. This DVD brings back sweet memories and facts that have enlightened me again and again. A must for the student of petry and the beats or any one who enjoys a good "watch". koshin, Bob Hanson
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