A chronicle of John Lennon's first years, focused mainly in his adolescence and his relationship with his stern aunt Mimi, who raised him, and his absentee mother Julia, who re-entered his life at a crucial moment in his young life.
Kristin Scott Thomas,
Morbid biographical story of Sid Vicious, bassist with British punk group the Sex Pistols, and his girlfriend Nancy Spungen. When the Sex Pistols break up after their fateful US tour, ... See full summary »
The story of the famous and influential 1960s rock band and its lead singer and composer, Jim Morrison, from his days as a UCLA film student in Los Angeles, to his untimely death in Paris, France at age 27 in 1971.
The story of the life and career of the legendary rhythm and blues musician Ray Charles, from his humble beginnings in the South, where he went blind at age seven, to his meteoric rise to stardom during the 1950s and 1960s.
Fact-based story about the drug-addled and sordid life of The Rolling Stones founder Brian Jones. Unfortunately the story moves so quickly into the sensationalized decadence and drug-induced state of Jones, that the unknowing viewer has to wonder why anyone would care. There are only a few framing sequences with members of The Stones, particularly Keith Richards, that show they had a great respect for him and tried to bring him back into the band as he drifted away. Mixed into the destruction of Jones is a common builder, Frank Thorogood, who is given the unenviable task of trying to please Jones by rebuilding his estate and to watch him per Jones' manager's instructions. Thorogood's life is so far removed from all of the sex and drugs that he sees, that he envies and desires the tawdry life as well, but never quite fits in. Unfortunately, at least according to this film and according to a supposed death bed confessional of Thorogood in 1993, it led to Thorogood's murder of Jones in a... Written by
John Sacksteder <email@example.com>
On Frank's first day at Brian's, he goes to the telephone to make a call, but we hear the sound of dialing before his fingers are actually doing so. See more »
Thanks for making a marytr of me. If it wasn't for you I'd still be alive and, no one would care.
You know that isn't true. It was you screwing with Frank's head what did it, because you had nothing better to do. But you did know her...
You just had to go and screw it up, didn't ya? Your problem is, you were never happy - even Frank was happy.
You're wrong you know Tom. I was happy, somewhere in the middle there. The thing with happiness was... It was boring.
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It has taken Stephen Woolley ten years to get this on to the screen, which allowed him plenty of time to do his research. He began by acquiring the film rights to the book, 'Who Killed Cock Robin?' and added the rights to the deathbed revelations of Frank Thorogood; then the rights to the book by Anna Wohlin, one of Jones' two current girlfriends. He topped this by hiring a private eye to find Janet, the other girlfriend, to get her confirmation about the size of the Stoned lifestyle and some of the details of Jones' death. He was also able to find a few original cameras including a vintage Bolex, to match the ancient film clips slotted into parts of the story. Getting any film made has to be an obsession, and a major one at that, if it takes ten years. What kept Woolley going was having been too young to be a hippy, the realisation that he had bought (as we all did) the PR stunt depicting the leather-clad speed-freak drunk-rolling Beatles as nice fluffy chaps and the middle-class cricket fans from Kingston-upon-Thames as the evil and dangerous Stones, ' Jagger was at the London School of Economics', and seeing Brian Jones as the only band member who was a genuine bad boy; 'the missing link' to the decadent bohemian world. He links this to the dichotomy between Brian, the studiedly effete and spoiled brat, and Frank (Considine), a real bloke, an ex-soldier, with whom Woolley found himself identifying. He says he screened 'Performance' for the cast before shooting began, to get them into the zeitgeist, (We of the hippy generation realised that we could measure the effect of the encroaching years and our possible maturity by noting how we moved from identifying with Turner to 'being' Chas), and in fact the shooting of the gun scene from that gets a quote here. There are many little bits of contemporary reference intercut, and all so nearly subliminal that the audience could miss them if it were not well-acquainted with them from the first time round and/or didn't posses a certain amount of quick-fire intelligence. It's pleasurably flattering to be a member of an audience which is assumed to have these qualities. When you can say it in twenty frames, why milk it? The opening scenes establish Brian (Gregory) as the kingpin, getting a gig by phone while the rest of the band waits outside the red box. Although not much later Andrew Loog Oldham sells himself to them as manager, most of the subsequent story dispenses with a strictly chronological narrative. The general situation moves on, but in bunches of flash-back, present and flash-forward. Time's tooty-fruity. What happened after the Stones got Big was a gift to a film maker: Frank is taken on as a builder to tart up Brian's little mansion and, in spite of the huge gaps between their respective cultures, becomes part of the Stone's world. The parallels between this reality and the fictional scenario of the contemporaneous Cammell-Roeg film, are fascinating and should form the basis of a PHD for some 'sixties-fixated student sooner or later. For the camera-work, colour, montage, in purely visual terms 'Stoned' is worth seeing, although it would have been well worth Gregory putting on several extra pounds to cover his taut, well-toned musculature - Brian was quite chubby in real life - in fact all the band members could have added a little more puppy-fat. One obvious failing in 'Stoned' is its lack of bloody marvellous soundtrack; but there's hardly a film out now without a bloody marvellous soundtrack, and there are plenty of precedents; Orson Welles' 'Touch of Evil', for instance. For lasting power a film has to stand as a film rather than an extended marketing device. As a film, this cuts it. CLIFF HANLEY
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