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Not Fade Away
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But in the end the story line is secondary to the music and the time capsule of the 60s that you find in every frame of this movie. The movie soundtrack was supervised by Steven Van Zandt, yes, that Steven Van Zandt, and he does an incredible job not only compiling a ton of great 60s music (and thankfully not always the same ol' same ol' standards), but the band Douglas and his friends are putting together do some nice tunes as well. This movie is eye-candy from start to finish, I couldn't stop marveling at the incredible amount of details that went into framing this movie visually. Chase's writing is pretty crisp throughout the movie. At one point the band is close to signing and their would-be manager tells them that for the next 6 months they should play 7 days a week, 2 sets a night, at every and any possible bar in New York.Read more ›
The beginning of the film set the stage in a fabulous manner, with the imagined meeting of Mick and Keith on a train heading to school. (As a side note: when in the world will someone film a similar event of Lennon and McCartney?) A voice-over by the sister of the stories protagonist informs us that while almost everyone knows how that story goes; a similar one involving her brother Doug is known to virtually no one. The very obvious implication here is that her brother's band was not a success.
With that thought in mind we are allowed to observe the life of the band for the rest of its existence. Through this part of the film, we have the archetypical age band story. We watch the members fumble with their instruments, aping what they see and hear of their heroes. Gradually, competency occurs, amidst personal changes. Finally, the band stabilizes with five members who are capable of performing live and being appreciated by others. Conflict remains in the form of a battle for the lead singer role, and while a truce holds for a while, the loser is eventually forced from the band. Unfortunately, this isn't the end of the band's problems. Two members separately sow the seeds that eventually lead to the demise of the band. One member won't do shows outside the local area, citing loyalty to friends.Read more ›
As you will learn from the Bonus features on the Blu-ray (no bonuses on the standard DVD) this film was germinating in the mind of writer/director David Chase from the moment his HBO series "The Sopranos" ended. It took a while for him to say what he wanted. Not to give any "spoilers" (but I think you will find it helpful), Chase chose ACTORS , not musicians, to play the roles of members of the band (rather than choosing musicians and teaching them to act), and gave them four weeks of full-day music lessons before even starting the shoot.
The cast is basically unknowns except for James Gandolfini . I found I could relate to the actors who I had no previous image of, then I could Gandolfini, who still looks and sounds like Tony Soprano.
Chase chose to set the film in the years between 1962 and 1968, a time frame that had more changes in pop music styles (and fashion too!) than at any other time in music history. Anyone who was at least eight years old in 1962 will easily relate to this film.
As I noted above there are bonuses on the BD version. First comes a three-part "Making of" doc titled "The Basement Tapes".Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Excellent performances, perfect soundtrack, remarkably evocative of the timesPublished 21 days ago by jordar97
Apart from giving us the charming charisma of John Magaro (reminiscent of a young Mark Ruffalo), this film fails on so many levels it isn't funny. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Arizona Dan
Story was great, reminiscent for anyone who was in a garage band after the Beatles landed in America! The vendor who sold this was fabulous !Published 7 months ago by frugal shopper
This is the worst piece of celluloid gibberish that I have seen in my life. The acting was average high school. Read morePublished 7 months ago by James D. Hutchinson
Finally got around to seeing this 2012 film now in early 2016. The overall average review is only 3 stars which I somewhat understand. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Donnie The B
An outstanding movie that did not get the audience it deserved. A great concoction of the 1960's British Invasion, garage rock, rebellion, and hormones. Read morePublished 14 months ago by andrew mcdavid