Everyone Stares: The Police Inside Out (2006) Poster

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Great inside out look at the rise and rise of a seminal band
nscoggins23 January 2006
Just got back from seeing this at Sundance, and I have to say (as an unabashed Police fan) that this is as great a perspective as you will get of a band's eye view of their world. From the initial chaos of life on the road, to the passion of those fans for whom your world is theirs, to the eventual strange, quiet normalcy of touring, the film is a unique postcard to a time when The Police were truly the world's biggest band.

What the film lacks in narrative conflict, it more than makes up for in its candid perspectives on the dynamics between the Police -- Andy Summers in particular is a hoot, and it's only a shame that Sting's tortured genius couldn't find more of a release in front of Stewart's camera.

No "warts and all" view of the band this, rather (as appropriately titled) it is as much a documentary of the fans who made the band what they were, as it is of the band itself, and is all the better for being so.
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Great documentary for Police fans
jeff-123226 January 2006
I saw the film at what I think was the third of three screenings at the Sundance Film Festival Tuesday night. I had modest expectations -- that were exceeded. The film's clearly not a glossy documentary, but it's certainly a cut above watching someone else's home movies. Copeland did a fine job of making the viewer feel included in the inner circle and created a fascinating document of a band's rise in popularity.

Everyone Stares is surprisingly poignant: you see the early camaraderie and friendship strain under the pressures of success and increased commercial expectations. Some reviewers have commented negatively on the story stopping before Synchronicity. I, on the other hand, think the core pieces of the story were told without embracing the final album (which, I'll add, is my least favorite of the five).

The soundtrack was inventive and enjoyable: Copeland deconstructed and remixed Police tracks, providing dubbed-out, looped versions that I really enjoyed both as film music and on its own.

From a music archivist point of view, it's unique and fascinating how Copeland managed to document as much as he did. Unlike a contrived "making of" video, this footage feels intimate and natural.

Here's how I'd sum this up: if you're predisposed to like The Police in the first place, you'll likely enjoy this movie. If not, well, there are other documentaries that probably relate to things you're interested in.
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calabro-bt14 September 2006
This DVD is for every die-hard Police fan. The 1st person perspective enlightens you on how the band saw their journey to stardom evolve. It was nice to see that Sting, Stewart & Andy actually got along quite well. There are some great in-studio shots of Sting & Andy working out the guitar riff for Da do do do, as well as Sting playing the bass on Secret Journey. I think the film actually peaks when the band plays the US festival. After that, the footage really dwindles. There is no Synchronicity footage at all. Perhaps the band was so big at that point that the camera was left home? I know MTV covered their tour and that was my first concert (Foxboro, MA 8/03)but still it would have been nice to see some of those behind the scenes. The music mix was sensational and I am looking forward to hear Stewart's arrangements.

Great Job Stewart!
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Fans will love this
vince_cadena9 September 2008
This is a pretty interesting documentary, in the early 80s if you ever saw Stewart Copeland with a camera and wondered what he was doing, this is it. It's basically home movies Copeland took when he was with The Police. It's interesting hearing what he has to say and to actually see some behind the scenes. Musically it's very nice but at times the audio is weak, that's due to the fact that a good audio system wasn't available but you get to hear some great live versions of some hits.There are some really funny moments an since it is a documentary, a few times I was reminded of This is Spinal Tap, which isn't a bad thing. We get to kind of know the band members and by the end I felt this film was a pleasing experience, showing us what it's like being a member of a rock group.
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You'll feel like a rock star when you watch this film.
tassoulak1 June 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Stewart Copeland brings a fresh, first-person perspective to this essential music documentary about his enormously successful band The Police.

Fans of the band know of the legendary battles the three band members endured throughout their career together, but this film, shows how great it was before their success consumed them.

Shot in grainy 8mm film, the organic visuals complete the essence of this rock and roll time capsule, which features rare concert footage and behind-the-scenes glimpses of their rise to fame. The most unique aspect is the perspective—as a viewer you're seeing everything through the eyes of drummer Stew—so you feel as if you're absorbing the atmosphere as it progresses at a frighteningly rapid pace.

For example, early in the documentary, they're asking for directions to a Best Western motel; by the end, only a few years later, they're frolicking on the French Riviera.

What could have been a very sad account of how creative differences tore apart a legendary band is actually a heartwarming scrapbook of fond memories, reminding all of us of how good it once was.
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Not at all what it should have been.
nkfilms19 May 2008
I have quite a few problems with this documentary, being a huge fan of The Police. (Own "Message in a Box", saw them live in 2007, I'm totally influenced by them in my own music...) This was a major letdown. Here's the problem.

Copeland is a terrible narrator, half the film he's mumbling on and has such little charisma for narrating a documentary. The quality of his super8 camera is brutal, and that in itself wouldn't be so bad, but the WHOLE documentary is basically told with this super8 grainy, look.

It doesn't capture the actual soul of what the Police were. It basically follows 79-84, as if it were just, "Oh then we got a track on the charts, then we went to a concert, then we did some traveling, oh then we did some more shows, now we're big, then we released a couple albums, then a few more shows, now it's over." The only sense of conflict in the band you will get in the WHOLE documentary is the following quips.

Stewart: I'm starting to hate this band.

Sting: Stewart... I blame you for all my problems.

--- That's it. This is the so called band that had it's drummer break the lead singers ribs, get into fistfights, and downright hate each other, but at the same time record some of the greatest rock music ever. It basically is something slapped together, with some old footage, called a Police DOCUMENTARY and it just, has no thread. Nothing, I can only say, SOME (but little), of the documentary was okay, and had a couple cool things going for it, some interesting little parts to it, but way to little to even make this a repeat viewing.

If you're a die hard police fan, it's only an hour, and you might get a chuckle, and a "Oh cool.", but believe me, for the 5 minutes of total time where you're interested, there's another 60 of boring crap. Why can't Martin Scorsese do a Police documentary?
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Narration nearly sinks it
clivey69 August 2008
This is very nearly scuppered by Copeland's present-day, gee-whizz narrative, which is surprisingly square and self-regarding. You can't imagine Mick or Keith, or Debbie, or Chrissie (Hynde) doing anything like it and makes the whole project totally uncool. It's like being round your mate's house and being followed by an overenthusiastic American dad, you keep hoping he'll disappear so you can raid the fridge for beers and watch Chuck's new Jenna Jameson flick.

Eventually Copeland shuts up and the footage takes on a real quirky charm, the blonds larking about like moptop Beatles in negative, though you sometimes wonder if bands were always like that or if having a camera were the equivalent of larking about for a facebook picture today.

Some good music and Copeland is interesting about the bad effects of fame towards the end. It doesn't outstay its welcome at just 70 mins.
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Not commercial, but...
georgina-elizondo21 December 2006
Just a few can catch the intensity of the film because as almost of Stewart's solo works, doesn't have a commercial value. Not even the derangements of the band's songs, which sound in a unique Copeland's style.

For me is an Avant-garde movie that reflects the marginalized his author has been, about the fact that the band he created "The Police" was stolen almost in all the image commercial credits, from another man (Stingo). Anyway the shots shows that the three band members liked each other, while they been together. If you see the movie, you can perceived the loneliness that feels a Rock Super Star, who are traveling from city to city, and many time, his life goes days, weeks or months, inside an Hotel room. Many shots are through the windows from hotels in the cities where he was, showing the band crew, just passing one from another, like ghosts in live machine. The quickly shots are also avant-garde, showing how life are just breaths of someone who can perceived in all its intensity, what happen with his soul/inner I, living all these experiences. For me this film is a masterpiece of the inside of a successful band, but as a matter of fact, every shot is opposed to mainstream commercial values, so just a few people will understand it, at least nowadays.

PS-June-7-2007. He also played very good with colors in his movie, and seeing this, now I am thinking the movie has a very psychedelic effect...
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Police Superstardom = Worst time of Sting's life?
ninjacatprincess12 January 2007
Just got the DVD Everyone Stares...and I'm curious.

I've been watching interviews with Sting (while there is discussion of a possible reunion tour). Details are still being ironed out right now...

Can someone enlighten me on why Sting commented super stardom in the Police was the worst time of his life? I think I missed that part. If that's the case, why do a reunion tour?

I know there were contractual issues (I do believe Sting was writing tons of lyrics but wasn't getting paid but so much). Was it just the money or creative control?
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face-value look via home movies at an exciting time for an exciting band
Quinoa198422 September 2010
Stewart Copeland may have not been the best person to make a documentary on his own band, but then again he has the inside scoop. He has all of the 8mm footage that he shot during the time period, so it makes sense that he would come back around years later to look back on the time that he was with one of the biggest bands in the world. If someone else had made it there would have been distance, more of a documentary perspective (maybe, say, like Tom DiCillo's When You're Strange). I think Copeland's not-quite-there ability as a storyteller kind of hampers the quality of the film, there is still enough goodie footage that it makes for some captivating viewing.

If there is an overall problem it's just the looseness of it. There's little conflict revealed in what is going on with the Police when they're really hitting it huge until Copeland tells us in his narration. It's the kind of breezy over-dubbing that takes the band at face-value. He does paint a better picture than one might get reading a book about the band, and it's not in-depth. What it does do is provide a window at a time and place, some of the frenzy, the energy of the music. It almost would have been better to let the footage speak for itself. Most of Copeland's observations could be ascertained from what's on screen- the huge crowds and massive fans, the overwhelming quality of the far-out places they travel to to shoot music videos, their rise from small-time to big-time venues- but at least what's on screen is there, and there are some good behind the scenes moments (my favorite is when we see Copeland shooting the music video crew shooting the Police video for Do-Do-Do-De-Da-Da-Da).
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Good, bad and the ugly
artemis-2323 July 2008
This was a total mish-mash for me. There were elements I found very impressive, and others plain awful. Overall, I wouldn't watch it again. Die-hard fans will be happy to see lots of behind-the-scenes and will probably enjoy it for that fact alone.

Here are the GOOD things: 1) Creative and thoughtful editing of what appears to be countless hours of footage. 2) The'derangement' and sound mixing of the songs - the highpoint for me. The vibe was great - felt reflective and a tad melancholy. You could tell it was pieces and parts of the original recordings used in a new way. 3) The music and video editing complement each other very well given that most rock docs feel tossed together by amateurs.

The BAD: 1) The grainy Super-8 and a combination of bad lighting made some parts difficult to see 2) There was not one shred of 'real' in this -- just the blokes messing around having fun.

The UGLY: 1) Stewart may have written the script, but he is absolutely HORRIBLE in narrating it. It completely overshadowed the good 2)The script was pompous, detached and avoided any real insight or emotional details about the rise and fall of this band. Left us knowing little more than we already do. Too much footage of fans, and very few intimate moments with the band. Guess The Police don't want to turn off their fans since they have re-stoked their machine and are milking it once again.
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A great rockumentary!
skellbag20 February 2007
Any Police fan (or any fan of rock music, really) will greatly enjoy this first-person view into the rise of what would become one of the world's biggest rock acts. Some have even compared The Police's success and popularity to The Beatles (yowza!) Band drummer/sometime composer/founder Stewart Copeland provides an amiable account of the growth and eventual "world domination" of his band, giving us intimate, funny, and entertaining insight into how a band goes from struggling with small gigs to playing multi-continent festivals and headlining tours. All the footage was shot by Copeland throughout the years with the band, pieced together by him, and he even did some remixes of existing Police material for the film's score (along with their more familiar, and not so familiar tunes).

Being a musician and music fan in general, I am always interested in watching band documentaries, interviews, etc... and this film does not disappoint. Give it a watch. Even if you're not necessarily a big fan of The Police, you may be by the end of this movie.
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Everyone Stares
gopointers214 September 2006
In 'Everyone Stares: The Police Inside Out', Stewart Copeland presents a behind-the-scenes, and very unique, look at The Police, from their inception to the very end.

The premise is Stewart buys an 8mm camera and begins filming his band from the very, very beginning. In many ways, this film brings you into the perspective of being in a band going from nearly nothing to being the biggest band on the planet, all in under 5 years. The film is shot on 8mm, so it has a grainy, sort of distorted style at times. However, this film is really beautiful. Copeland definitely has an eye for a shot, and mixed amongst the band messing around, playing live, or signing autographs for fans, are beautiful interspersed shots of various locations The Police sauntered through during their days.

This movie may not be for everyone. At around 1:20 in length, it is a short, very entertaining look at one of the greatest rock bands of the 1980s. If you are a fan of The Police, you will absolutely love this film. If not, I believe you'll appreciate how this film is very different than other music documentaries. This really is a very good to outstanding film about music. The fact that it was filmed by a member of the band, and he has a great eye for film, is wholly unique. I highly recommend this film.
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