A new biopic is being made about Kurt Cobain, I want this to be better than Last Days the Gus van Sant movie, and yes he says Last Days was loosely based on Kurt so we can hope the new one is better. I must have driven my flat mates out of their minds in the eighties, I had Teen spirit and All apologies on loop.
Perhaps the first biopic of a musician that I saw was a movie about German punk singer Nina Hagen called Cha Cha, well it was sort of a biopic. Mostly I remember that it was long and boring and I got a lot of flak from my friends who I had convinced to come along.
That was in the early eighties a long time ago, I was 18 or 19 at the time and as one of them put it “we could of watched Rocky instead of that sh*t” but the pattern was set and I’ve been watching them as often as I could ever since . As is my want they are usually about obscure and brilliant and mostly dead musicians. Corbijns’ stark film Control about the iconic Joy Division front man Ian Curtis is a masterpiece, and Sam Riley as Ian Curtis sublime. I’m grateful that he did a good job, as a fan from the first time I heard them I liked that he put as much as he could in to the film.
What we do is secret, Rodger Grossmans film about Darby Crash and the Germs is a favourite, I like Shane West this is his best work. Crash was a one of a kind psychotic little sh*t who craved destruction, as he often sang “personal destruction” he found out that the more you close people out the more you close yourself in, and ended his 5 year reign of terror over the LA punk scene with his usual flair by committing suicide, unfortunately it hardly made the papers as he did it on the same day John Lennon was assassinated.
The devil and Daniel Johnston, by strange coincidence Kurt Cobain was the reason that DJ got noticed and his very distinctive music found a following, the film follows his decent in to madness. Jeff Feuerzeig’s documentary is compelling and sad, well worth watching. I’d like to see biopics made about Nick Drake the wistful, lost boy of English folk.
Pink Moon is always on my I-Pod, and perhaps Jeff Buckley and Elliott Smith and Amy Winehouse seminal talents lost to the world much too soon. And in the South African context a good biopic on Johannes Kerkorrel, that’s long overdue I saw Voelvry a while ago but I feel that he was enough of an exceptional talent to warrant a film about him on his own
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