Director Tamra Davis pays homage to her friend in this definitive documentary but also delves into Basquiat as an iconoclast. His dense, bebop-influenced neoexpressionist work emerged while... See full summary »
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Jean Michel Basquiat,
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Director Tamra Davis pays homage to her friend in this definitive documentary but also delves into Basquiat as an iconoclast. His dense, bebop-influenced neoexpressionist work emerged while minimalist, conceptual art was the fad; as a successful black artist, he was constantly confronted by racism and misconceptions. Much can be gleaned from insider interviews and archival footage, but it is Basquiat's own words and work that powerfully convey the mystique and allure of both the artist and the man. Written by
Sundance Film Festival
I really liked this movie and what it shows not only about the new york art scene of the 1980s and Basquiat, but about how fame and success can easily lead to destruction. However, at times the movie is hard to watch because the sound is TERRIBLE! I don't understand how clearly talented film makers could take so little time and have so little care about the sound. They clearly took lots of time and care in interviewing many important and interesting players within the scene and Basquiat's life, but often I fell out of the movie simply because i was struggling to understand the bad audio, then starting to wonder why the audio was so bad. Some interviews had clearly exposed clip on mics and that was so much preferred to the other interviews where the audio was either distorted, rustle or clearly just a camera mic. I mean, even the interview done on the analog video camera in the 1980s sounded so much better than half of the interviews that feature prominently in the film.
I want to recommend this movie highly, as I feel its story has a lot of continuity to the artists of today, but i also have to strongly warn them that the audio is so bad that it might not be worth the struggle.
Please! please! Please! Documentary film makers out there, care as much about the sound as you care about the image and content. All three are needed to make a movie work. Nothing is more frustrating than suffering through an interview solely because the sound is bad. Learn something about sound. Care about your sound, or hire some one who does!
6 of 8 people found this review helpful.
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