7.6/10
2,145
48 user 60 critic

Festival Express (2003)

Trailer
2:05 | Trailer
The filmed account of a large Canadian rock festival train tour boasting major acts like Janis Joplin, The Grateful Dead and The Band.
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rick Danko Rick Danko ... Self - The Band
Levon Helm ... Self - The Band
Garth Hudson ... Self - The Band
Richard Manuel ... Self - The Band
Robbie Robertson ... Self - The Band
Bonnie Bramlett ... Self - Delaney & Bonnie & Friends
Delaney Bramlett Delaney Bramlett ... Self - Delaney & Bonnie & Friends
Ben Benay Ben Benay ... Self - Delaney & Bonnie & Friends
Sam Clayton Sam Clayton ... Self - Delaney & Bonnie & Friends
Jim Gordon ... Self - Delaney & Bonnie & Friends
Kenny Gradney Kenny Gradney ... Self - Delaney & Bonnie & Friends / Interviewee
Jerry Jumonville Jerry Jumonville ... Self - Delaney & Bonnie & Friends
Darrell Leonard ... Self - Delaney & Bonnie & Friends
Frank Maize Frank Maize ... Self - Delaney & Bonnie & Friends
Chuck Morgan Chuck Morgan ... Self - Delaney & Bonnie & Friends
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Storyline

In the summer of 1970, a chartered train crossed Canada carrying some of the world's greatest rock bands. The Grateful Dead, Janis Joplin, The Band, Buddy Guy, and others lived (and partied) together for five days, stopping in major cities along the way to play live concerts. Their journey was filmed. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Festival Express... The longest party in rock-n-roll history.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

There were two bands, Traffic and Ten Years After, that were on the Festival Express tour but are not seen in the movie. The producers of the film could not get the musical rights. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Goedemorgen Nederland: Episode dated 29 April 2004 (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Casey Jones
From the Album "Workingman's Dead"
Performed by Grateful Dead
Written by Jerry Garcia (as J. Garcia) / Robert Hunter (as R. Hunter)
Published by Ice Nine Publishing Company, Inc.
Courtesy of Warner Bros. Records Inc.
by arrangement with Warner Strategic Marketing
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User Reviews

 
From someone who was there
15 November 2005 | by davidg-46See all my reviews

I was there at the Toronto performance(s). I was inside the venue all the time and never got to see any of the hassle with the cops and the gate crashers. The first time I saw it was in this film. I must say, Altamont it was not.

I was fairly well connected from working on the fringe of the music business in Toronto at the time and I knew some of the people who were on the tour. I would have given my left arm to have been on that train but it wasn't to be.

Let me tell you... this film just comes close - but no cigar - to how it REALLY was like to be there as it happened. The performances were, for the most part, electrifying and I can confidently assure you that the audience(s) had about as good a time as the performers!

I had been exposed to the "California contingent" which was on the tour years earlier in 1967 when I was living in Berkely and hanging out at the Avalon and the Filmore. I got to see the Dead and Janice before anyone had heard of them outside of California. This tour and this film caught them at their best as far as I'm concerned. Janice and the band were KILLER! Her set alone is worth the price of the DVD.

Watching this film was, for me, like going through a time-warp and being transported back to a more carefree time when I was minus wife, kids, mortgage,etc.

Although the production values aren't up to today's Hollywood snuff, considering what the producers had to work with, that they got it this polished is miraculous. I especially liked that the producers rounded up a number of the participants to interview them and get their take on it from over thirty years later.

The only significant down-side from my point of view is that some of the performers who appeared on the tour were not in the film and, in my opinion, their performances were no less worthy of inclusion. Some of the "travelogue" shots in the film could have been dumped to make more room for the music. I suppose that certain rights issues and technical quality issues were a barrier.

Anybody who has a warm spot in their heart for the music, the bands and the ethos of that era MUST add this DVD to their collection.


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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

UK | Netherlands

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 April 2004 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

Fesztivál Expressz See more »

Filming Locations:

Canada See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$12,074, 25 July 2004

Gross USA:

$1,174,079

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,281,754
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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