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Down from the Mountain Reviews

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Ken Hanke
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

A beautifully done record of a very unusual event - and one that inadvertently serves as a testament to John Hartford, making it a very special document of musical history.

Full Review Source: Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC) | Original Score: 4/5

February 18, 2004

Film Threat

Now if you're looking for an in-depth study of the music, look elsewhere. This movie is strictly about the one event [a benefit concert (for the Country Music Hall of Fame 2001)].

Full Review Source: Film Threat | Original Score: 3.5/5

December 8, 2002
Ryan Cracknell
Apollo Guide

Feels glossed over and incomplete.

Full Review Source: Apollo Guide | Original Score: 69/100

November 23, 2002
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A film that's lovely to hear, though not much to look at.

Full Review Source: Globe and Mail | Original Score: 2.5/4

May 31, 2002
Richard Harrington
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The music is grand, the performances are direct and Down From the Mountain is unpretentious in its presentation of both.

January 6, 2002
Carrie Rickey
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic IconTop Critic

In her performances and asides to the documentarians, it is Welch who best articulates why this music is so moving.

| Original Score: 3/4

November 8, 2001
Joe Baltake
Sacramento Bee

Has the ease of a casual get-together by musicians who enjoy jamming with each other and who give us the privilege to sit there and listen and watch.

Full Review Source: Sacramento Bee

October 27, 2001
Shawn Levy

Hardly a groundbreaking concert movie, but it's a creditably agreeable one.

Full Review Source: Oregonian

October 25, 2001
Bill Chambers
Film Freak Central

A Polaroid sprung to life.

Full Review Source: Film Freak Central | Original Score: 3/4

October 25, 2001
Jim Lane
Sacramento News & Review

It's poor filmmaking, but wonderful music.

Full Review Source: Sacramento News & Review | Original Score: 3/5

October 22, 2001
Jason Wood

It's impossible to deny the unalloyed joy that the film gives the spectator.

Full Review Source: | Original Score: 4/5

October 21, 2001
Widgett Walls

John Hartford is the uncle you wish to God you had had as a kid. And he can play that fiddle, too.

Full Review Source: | Original Score: 4/5

October 19, 2001
Bob Graham
San Francisco Chronicle
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Like the old-timey music that inspired it, Down From the Mountain is sweet, serene and utterly unconcerned with polish.

Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Original Score: 3/4

October 12, 2001
Timothy Finn
Kansas City Star

Pennebaker must have realized that the songs -- the spiritual sounds of the deprived and underprivileged -- were the story, so he let the music do most of the talking. A wise move on his part.

Full Review Source: Kansas City Star

October 12, 2001
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul)
St. Paul Pioneer Press

There are plenty of musical highlights here.

Full Review Source: St. Paul Pioneer Press

October 4, 2001
Misha Berson
Seattle Times
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A tender tribute to Hartford's spirit, and to the enduring value of the plaintive and celebratory music that emerged from this country's farm fields and front porches and backwoods churches.

Full Review Source: Seattle Times

September 21, 2001
Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune
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The whole experience is wonderful -- and this is a film to own on videotape, since you'll probably want to play these songs again and again.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune

September 20, 2001
Scott Von Doviak

One of the rare concert films that successfully erases the distance between viewing audience and onscreen performers.

Full Review Source:

September 10, 2001
Daniel Eagan
Film Journal International

Roots-music lovers will find plenty here to applaud.

Full Review Source: Film Journal International

September 7, 2001
Steve Simels
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Frankly, it's shot and edited like a PBS special of average quality. But musically it's often breathtaking.

Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide | Original Score: 4/5

September 7, 2001
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