Your favorite music-related movie?

John suggested this idea in the last thread (about books), and it seemed like a perfect follow-up, so let's roll with it. What's your favorite movie about music? It can be fiction or non-fiction, serious or goofy, it doesn't matter.

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Dana Reid
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<a href= >The Excordis Domain</a>

Jon Perry
Anyone seen this little cult movie: Southlander?

Definitely falls in the "silly" category. This is an extremely low budget comedy about a guy who loses the greatest keyboard ever - "the '69 molotron" - and then tries to track it down through Los Angeles classified ads. It's filled with a bunch of cameos and wacked out music video sequences, and makes me laugh every time.

May be a stretch but the first one that comes to mind is Drugstore Cowboy. For some reason, that soundtrack always stuck in my mind.

I'll throw out Hail! Hail! Rock and Roll a nice documentary on an aging Chuck Berry from 1987 -- although 20+ years later he's still going...

24 Hour Party People.

I don't know if I can narrow it down to my favorite, but "The Buena Vista Social Club" is a nice documentary about aging cuban musicians. It's definitely worth checking out.

"Dig" was pretty interesting. "Pink Floyd: Live at Pompeii" was pretty amazing.

But I am pretty sure Sigur Ros's "Heima" will take the cake on November 20th though.

The Commitments reminds me to mention that other recent Irish music film, Once - a very sweet, rough treat.

Roddy Doyle's "The Commitments".
Fantastic theme & soundtrack, and one of the most realistic depictions of urban life in Dublin in the 90s!

Fugazi - Instrument


I'll second Sympathy for the Devil, though it's definitely love it or hate it fare. Godard takes Stones rehearsal footage and intercuts rhetoric of Black Panthers and Marxists revolutionaries, essentially comparing the evolution of the song with that of the revolution. Very much a product of the late 60s, but great stuff nonetheless.

Also love Last Days, I'm Not There, High Fidelity (duh), Immortal Beloved (for Gary Oldman), Gimme Shelter and The Burmese Harp.

I think I'd have to go with 24 Hour Party People.

ah shit, I forgot two big ones...
Bob Dylan - Don't Look Back
Neil Young - Year of the Horse by Jim Jarmusch

Jean Luc Goddard's, "Sympathy for the Devil" is really great. It's all over the place with commentary on social ills and tons of other shit but the gem is the documentation of the Stones putting together the pieces of the song Sympathy for the Devil.
The Decline of Western Civilization (parts 1 and 2)
Heavy Metal Parking Lot

Well, it depends, does he has the same record collection and writing skils?

I really don't think anyone wants that...


Maybe you should clone yourself Almostcool!!

Dangit, you got me. I have all the reviews written for the Can retrospective, but I need to do the podcasts yet. I'm hoping that sometime between now and the end of the year I find time to do them, although with trying to do my year-end mix and catch up on a few things, it likely won't happen until early 2008.

I was thinking about doing Talking Heads, but have started on a Brian Eno retrospective instead (about halfway through writing those). I might get to a TH one at some point, though. I do love them so.

I guess I still don't have a definitive answer, but they will get up here eventually, I promise.

It's off the subject, but still looking forward to those Can and Talking Heads review specials you had planned... Will they be anytime soon?

Oh, and the Last Waltz! I'll also second The Piano Teacher.

Stop Making Sense!

oh yeah, the lb doc is tops, i forgot about that. i even own a copy! also, underworld's "everything everything" dvd is pretty infectious.

I think Hegwig and the Angry Inch is fantastic! Also, the Lightning Bolt movie, 'the power of salad and milkshakes' is rad rad rad.

To Joy
Goya in Bordeaux

"The Beat That My Heart Skipped" definitely has music as a major component of the film, and like you I thought it was great as well.

Another music-related film I'd recommend is "The Devil and Daniel Johnston." I'm not a particularly big fan of his musical output, but the film was an interesting look at a person who has some mental problems and the people on all sides of him who try to help and/or possibly exploit him.

Also, I'm jealous of you. I really want to see "Control."

I've just been to see I'm Not There, Todd Haynes' new Bob Dylan film - and thought it was an excellent music film, bursting with Dylan tunes and a very successful attempt to tackle Dylan's enigma, with six actors/actresses playing Dylan. Makes me want to go back and watch Velvet Goldmine, Haynes' glamrock movie - even though many thought it a failure.

obviously, "Spinal Tap" is a masterpiece :-) on a serious note, I've seen "Control" (by Anton Corbijn) two times in the past 2 weeks... shed a tear both times when "Atmosphere" was played over the closing scene/credits. Loved it. Loved it. Loved it. Also, "Last Days" (by Gus Van Sant) was great, imho. and High Fidelity had a great script as well....could these art-house ones be regarded as movies about music? "The Piano Teacher" and "Beat That My Heart Skipped"? great films..

a few years ago at the wisconsin film festival i saw a documentary called, simply enough, "the underground rock and roll in china." it looked like it was all shot on mini-dv / camcorder, but the energy of it all was quite captivating and, from what i remember, negated any of the amateurish / ragged aspects.

hey man nice to see the review of bruce haack up there i'm glad you enjoyed it.
music related movies: punk attitude, we jam econo the minutemen documentary, dig the brian jonestown massacre and dandy warhols movie, and of course high fidelty

This might not be exactly what you meant at first with the topic...but has anyone see the "People Party" piece that the EatTapes guy made for Panda Bear's recent short-lived tour?

Kind of more just concert footage; just curious.

john. in chicago.
depeche mode 101. the tedium of being a band on tour juxtaposed w/ obsessive teenage fandom. the version of "everything counts" intersperses the band performing with the show settlement where the building and tour managers haggle over paying for repair of the rose bowl's turf. it's one of my favorites scenes in film.

24 hour party people was great, too. have to see that again...

I can't recall seeing many movies about music, but:
This Is Spinal Tap (funniest film ever);
High Fidelity (had to see it twice in a week - the first time I saw it I ignored the plot and was just looking at album covers I recognised!);
"All You Need Is Cash: The Rutles Story" (yeah, it's okay, but Idle wasn't the funniest Python anyway)
"The Road To God Knows Where" (Nick Cave tour film - listen out for The Wolfgang Press soundchecking);
"Pavement: Slow Century" (a great DVD, I agree).
I'm stuck now

Amadeus is pretty good. I'll second that one.

I also like Live Forever, the rise and fall of brit pop documentary. The Pavement slow century DVD was pretty good.

There is also is a wew documentary on the shoegaze scene by Eric Green that is coming out next year. It is called Beautiful Noise. Kevin Shields and a bnuch of other msucians from the era are interview.

I thought New York Doll was a very good music documentary, as well as an incredibly moving character piece.

Has anyone seen "The Ruttles"? It's one of Eric Idle's first post-Monty Python projects, and (years before Spinal Tap) creates a mock-umentary on The Ruttles, a Beatles-esque group. It is pretty much The Beatles (songs, band history, etc) except with an Idle twist to the story.

Absolutely brilliant.

The parts of Immortal Beloved that focus on Beethoven's music are very powerful. And I have to agree with High Fidelity...a movie by, for, and about the pure love of music and how it shapes our lives and memories.

"The Red Violin" has always been a lovely film...though I haven't seen all of it in a while. Love the idea of the 'perfect acoustic machine'...

Nice review of the Feu Therese! I think you're right on; if the best elements could be combined from this and the debut; wow! They both have things I really like; still surprised at how catchy this one was.

And that cloudland canyon 'silver-tongued sisyphus' is pretty amazing. Nabbed one of the 96 vinyls from time-lag!

I have a feeling that it will be a popular one, but I think that if I had to pick one music-related movie, it would be "Spinal Tap." I've seen it ten times or more and it always makes me laugh. Easily one of the best comedies ever made.

I'm also a fan of "The Piano," "Amadeus," and "High Fidelity."

Oh, and "Gimme Shelter" is pretty nuts as well.