This feature documentary film explores the life of Bob Moog, who has been inventing and building electronic musical instruments for nearly half a century. It explores Moog's collaborations with musicians over the years as well as his ideas about creativity, design, interactivity and spirituality. It also features appearances by Keith Emerson, Walter Sear, Gershon Kinsgley, Jean-Jacques Perrey and Luke Vibert, Rick Wakeman, DJ Spooky, Herb Deutsch, Bernie Worrell, Pamelia Kurstin, Tino Corp. with Charlie Clouser, Money Mark, and Mix Master Mike. Vintage films, borrowed from private collections, round out this stylized, wonderfully strange story of a true American maverick. … More
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Critic Reviews for Moog
For every insight, there are a half-dozen meandering conversations and unguided reminiscences.
Fjellestad exhibits a playful adoration for the man and the otherworldly sounds of his machine in an intriguing rendering of one of music technology's seminal figures.
Largely, you get to watch a nice old guy waxing philosophical in his beloved vegetable garden, in his workshop or amid city traffic.
The doc focuses exclusively on Robert Moog, and Robert Moog is, well, kind of boring.
A collection of dry interviews and so-so music, it's better suited to public TV than the big screen.
It's unfortunate that there are so many ideas left behind before they get a chance to start
There are things to be learned here, but it would take a real aficionado to geek out on all the knobs and circuit boards on display.
The testimonials are plentiful, coming from the varied likes of prog-rock kings Rick Wakeman and Keith Emerson to current turntablists like DJ Spooky, Money Mark and Mix Master Mike.
Would that this affectionate tribute to the unassuming man behind a musical revolution had more energy of its own.
If you're not fascinated by synthesized sound, this could be the longest seventy minutes of your life.
Audience Reviews for Moog
As someone who loves his piano and old Juno-60, I was highly interested in this film's subject matter. But what a disappointment. This film isn't sure whether to be a portrait of Robert Moog or a history of his products, and it fails on both counts. Little chronology of the important Moog artists and albums. Little sense of the Moog keyboard's evolution through the years. Not even much sense of how different knobs and plugs affect the keyboard's output. And the showcased artists seem somewhat arbitrary, as if it was just a case of including those who were easiest to book. I mean, really, if you can't get Wendy Carlos to appear in your Moog documentary, maybe it would be best to just scrap the project. And the climactic scene of Moog playing "Old Man River" on Theremin is wonderful, but it's preceded by a segment on other Theremin players which comes off totally out of sequence (this is a *pre*-synthesizer instrument, after all). Meanwhile, we twiddle our fingers as Moog putters around his garden and kitchen, plays video games in Tokyo and offers cosmic philosophizing on the relationship between musician and instrument which simply isn't too compelling.
Note the film's short length -- it *feels* short.
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