American Masters (1985– )
7.5/10
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5 user 2 critic

Lou Reed: Rock and Roll Heart 

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2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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John Cale ...
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Sterling Morrison ...
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Maureen Tucker ...
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29 April 1998 (USA)  »

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Crazy Credits

All the interviewees appear on screen one by one, staring at the camera in the style of a Warhol 'screen test': most of them crack up. See more »

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Bitty doc about the Avante Garde Rocker.
20 March 2015 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Lou Reed,legend, simple as. Here under the American Masters series he gets just over 70 minutes of screen time, which ultimately isn't enough. For fans of his work, both solo and with the legendary Velvet Underground, it's "nice" to have something on film, to see him acknowledged, and I guess for interested outsiders this is a good "grooming" doc. Yet there's so much missing, key periods in his career are given short shrift and replaced by stock filler concert scenes - none of which play the whole songs!

Is there anything here that fans will learn that is new? Possible not. The newcomers get a sample of his early influences, from romantic poets to beat street artists, the Velvet Underground period gets good time, with welcome chatter from John Cale and Mo Tucker, then his solo work is covered by a series of interview snippets, with credible and interesting back stories to some of his famous songs. The live footage pleases the eyes and ears, while the roll call of back slappers is mercifully not over-killed.

But it's not even close to being definitive and that just comes off as a shame and wasted opportunity. 6/10


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