Friday, October 16, 2020

DAVID BYRNE'S AMERICAN UTOPIA - BFI London Film Festival 2020 - Day 8

David Byrne's American Utopia is the concert film we need right now.  It's hard to believe this guy is 68 years old. His voice is still so strong and his creative instincts still so full of energy and innovation.  A year ago he took his new album American Utopia to Broadway, mixing it up with classing songs from the Talking Heads canon.  But rather than have a flashy stage set-up or costume changes or a conventional band playing static on stage, he decided to strip everything back to 11 people, wirelessly hooked into a sound system, with the same grey suits.  The joy and excitement of the stage performance comes - then - simply from their movement, their music and a kick-ass lighting design.  I've never seen something so kinetic and organic and authentically brilliant.  The music and message speak to a kinder, more inclusive America.  And it's sheer joy just to see so much talent on stage.  Praise should also go to Spike Lee for knowing just when to show the choreography in full, or when to focus in on the artists, and for matching the energy of the show with his kinetic, flowing camera work.  

DAVID BYRNE'S AMERICAN UTOPIA has a running time of 105 minutes. It played Toronto and London 2020 and was released in the USA yesterday. 

No comments:

Post a Comment