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Christmas 1988. Soulmates, woody and Lol find themselves in exile from each other and the gang. Trying to understand the definition 'growing up', Shaun begins a course at College, that quickly takes the wrong turn.
2011. After 15+ years apart, the original members of iconic English band The Stone Roses - Ian Brown, John Squire, Alan "Reni" Wren and Gary "Mani" Mounfield - reform for a concert tour. Enlisting the film-making talents of director Shane Meadows (This is England, Dead Man's Shoes, A Room for Romeo Brass) this film documents their reunion, including initial meetings, practice sessions and the concerts themselves. There is also coverage of their 80/90s history.Written by
Shane Meadows is one of my favourite directors; the Stone Roses are one of his favourite bands, and when they reformed a couple of years ago, Meadows got the job of making a film about their comeback, which is also a review of their career. The maker of 'This is England 90' is at his best when he captured how the band both shaped and were shaped by their time; perhaps unsurprisingly in an official documentary, we don't get much discussion of why the music on their second (career-ending) album was considered so disappointing by so many. The film of the young band is enchanting, though, if only because they are so young; as fifty-somethings, the band appear more guarded. The affectionate footage of the lifelong fans delighted by the reunion is a definite highpoint. What spoils it a little is the new concert footage at the end; an interminable guitar jam, followed by a dull rendition of 'Made of Stone' that loses all traces of the original's delicacy. One has to wait for the closing credits, and the chance to re-hear the original studio recording, to gain an appreciation of what the band did best at the peak of their career.
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