IMDb > Patti Smith: Dream of Life (2008)
Patti Smith: Dream of Life
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Patti Smith: Dream of Life (2008) More at IMDbPro »

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Release Date:
6 August 2008 (USA) See more »
An intimate portrait of poet, painter, musician and singer Patti Smith that mirrors the essence of the artist herself. | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Nominated for Primetime Emmy. Another 2 wins & 3 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Patti Smith is Fascinating, But This Documentary Is Unfocused and Wandering See more (11 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Patti Smith ... Herself: vocals and clarinet
Lenny Kaye ... Himself: guitar
Oliver Ray ... Himself: guitar
Tony Shanahan ... Himself: bass and vocals
Jay Dee Daugherty ... Himself: drums
Jackson Smith ... Himself
Jesse Smith ... Himself
Tom Verlaine ... Himself

Sam Shepard ... Himself

Philip Glass ... Himself
Benjamin Smoke ... Himself

Flea ... Himself
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Bob Dylan ... Himself (uncredited)

Michael Stipe ... Himself (uncredited)

Directed by
Steven Sebring 
Produced by
Sonoko Aoyagi Leopold .... line producer
Kristin Lovejoy .... supervising producer
Steven Sebring .... executive producer
Steven Sebring .... producer
Margaret Smilow .... executive producer
Margaret Smilow .... producer
Junko Tsunashima .... supervising producer
Scott Vogel .... producer
Original Music by
Hans Engstrom 
Cinematography by
Phillip Hunt (director of photography)
Steven Sebring (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Angelo Corrao 
Lin Polito 
Production Management
Andrew Reichsman .... production manager: London 'Horses' Concert (as Andy Reichsman)
Art Department
Alex Wiederin .... package art direction and design
Sound Department
Jorgen Axelvall .... additional sound
Angelo Corrao .... sound editor
Margaret Crimmins .... sound designer
Tim Fraser .... sound: London 'Horses' Consert
Charlie McGovern .... additional sound
Lin Polito .... sound editor
Anna Rieke .... additional sound
Steven Sebring .... sound recordist
Greg Smith .... sound designer: Dog Bark Sound
Tony Volante .... sound re-recording mixer: Sound Lounge
Anna Ehl .... assistant sound recordist engineer (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Jennifer Basnyat .... digital effects: MoltenLave Film Design
Camera and Electrical Department
Jorgen Axelvall .... camera assistant
Mia Barker .... additional assistant camera
Chris Bierlein .... additional assistant camera
Richard Lawson .... assistant camera: London 'Horses' Concert
James Lewis .... clapper loader: London 'Horses' Concert
Toshiaki Ozawa .... camera: London 'Horses' Concert (as Tpshi Ozawa)
John Pirozzi .... camera: London 'Horses' Concert
David Raedeker .... assistant camera: London 'Horses' Concert
Oliver Ray .... additional camera work
Steven Sebring .... camera: London 'Horses' Concert
Patti Smith .... additional camera work
Phoebe Sudrow .... assistant camera: London 'Horses' Concert
Editorial Department
Jennifer Basnyat .... digital conformist: Scratch
Laura Congleton .... assistant editor (as Laura H. Congleton)
Danny DeVincent .... digital intermediate colorist: Cineric (as Daniel Devincent)
Russell Greene .... assistant editor
Donald Klocek .... assistant editor
Noëlle Penraat .... negative matcher (as Noelle Penraat)
Jack Rizzo .... digital scanning and recording: Metropolis Film Lab
Music Department
John Adams .... music services
Emily Lee .... music services
Greg Smith .... composer: additional music
Other crew
Jennifer Basnyat .... title designer: MoltenLava Film Design
Jane Buckwalter .... project management
Andrew Burns .... road crew
Val Campbell .... location coordinator: London 'Horses' Concert
Bejou Baile De Laperriere .... assistant: director
Barre Duryea .... tour manager
Ran Geffen .... production assistant: London 'Horses' Concert
James Gray .... production assistant: London 'Horses' Concert
Aaron Kanter .... business affairs
Martin Le Maire .... road crew
Annie Leibovitz .... archival footage courtesy of
Dan Lilienfeld .... road crew
Gerard Malanga .... archival footage courtesy of
Jonas Mekas .... archival footage courtesy of
Amos Poe .... archival footage courtesy of
Hans Richter .... archival footage courtesy of
Ranfi Rivera .... business affairs
Rocky Roberts .... road crew
Shoshana Sebring .... creative consultant
Michael Stipe .... archival footage courtesy of
Tom Tyler .... production assistant: London 'Horses' Concert
Yuek Wong .... road crew
Travis Call .... thanks
Alex Halpern .... special thanks
Benn Northover .... thanks
Michael Stipe .... personal thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
109 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.66 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

The film was created over 11 years.See more »
Patti Smith:It's really funny when people ask you about that - How does it feel to be a rock icon? When they say that, I always think of Mt. Rushmore.See more »
Movie Connections:
References Dont Look Back (1967)See more »
CartwheelsSee more »


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17 out of 27 people found the following review useful.
Patti Smith is Fascinating, But This Documentary Is Unfocused and Wandering, 17 July 2008
Author: D_Burke from United States

"Patti Smith: Dream Of Life" was a film I saw at the 11th Annual Maine International Film Festival on July 16, 2008.

This film will without a doubt appeal mostly to Patti Smith fans. Those who don't know that much about her, and want to find out more, may want to buy one of her earlier albums (such as "Horses") or read about her on the Internet first. I say this only because the parts of this documentary when we hear Patti Smith in her own words are very well done, and at many times artistic. However, the movie loses its momentum within the second part when the director seems to be only interested in how Smith acts backstage. This latter subject takes up approximately 60% of this 109 minute movie, and it had me checking my watch constantly as I sat in the theater.

For the record, I have heard some of Patti Smith's records and generally like her music, but I don't count myself a big fan of hers which may be why I found myself bored through some of the movie. Truth be told, she is probably one of the most devoted musicians of the last 40 years, not to mention the most devoted and spirited female artist. She may not have a following as big as Bob Dylan or the Rolling Stones, but she has influenced countless alternative bands including R.E.M., Marilyn Manson, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Talking Heads, and other influential artists.

In regards to this documentary, the parts that truly shine are when Patti Smith speaks to the audience and recounts her influences, which include various poets not to mention Bob Dylan. I also liked some of the backstage footage of her interacting with her bandmates and even sometimes with her children. For such a musical legend, she is very personable and incredibly down to earth. She also is well aware of where she came from, as evidenced from the interesting part of the documentary where she visits her parents.

There are other great gems in this documentary, such as when she makes a live tirade against President George W. Bush. After hearing that speech, it made me wish that more antiwar protesters were that spirited.

You'll notice that so far, I've given Patti Smith a lot of compliments, all of which are well deserved. This documentary did her justice, and I will give it credit for that. However, it was just too unfocused for me, and those great moments were just thrown in there with a whole lot of rubble. The film could have truly benefited with some better editing and more finite organization. As a result, by the second half of the film, the momentum is completely lost and the film just drags.

It appeared that the filmmakers didn't know whether they wanted to make a true portrait of an artist or a concert feature. If they wanted to make a concert feature, they could have taken a hint from Martin Scorsese, who directed such great concert films as "The Last Waltz" and "Shine A Light". A concert feature wouldn't have been a bad idea either. Patti Smith fans would have enjoyed it, and those who aren't familiar with her work would be introduced to her great songs, energetic stage presence, and appealing personality. If the filmmakers had any inclination on a focal point to base this documentary around, it would have made for a far more energetic take on the first true alternative artist.

With all that said, it's difficult for me to recommend this picture. Die-hard Patti Smith fans may like it, but better editing would have brought this documentary to greater heights.

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