Music from the Big House (2012)

Music from the Big House

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.


Movie Info

In Music from the Big House, Rita Chiarelli, Canada's Queen of the Blues, takes a pilgrimage to the birthplace of the blues, Louisiana State Maximum Security Penitentiary a.k.a Angola Prison - what used to be the bloodiest prison in America. Rita's trip turns into a historic jailhouse performance - playing with inmates serving life sentences. Their shared bond of music, and Chiarelli's vivacious personality, draw striking revelations from the inmates. Rather than sensational stories of convicts, … More

Rating: Unrated
Genre: Documentary, Musical & Performing Arts, Special Interest
Directed By:
Written By: Erin Faith Young, Tony Burgess
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 8, 2013
Runtime:
Caché Film & Television - Official Site

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Critic Reviews for Music from the Big House

All Critics (10) | Top Critics (7)

Even with a gripping subject like blues-singing convicts, the documentary "Music from the Big House" has a disconcerting emotional distance.

Full Review… | June 15, 2012
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Don't look for Elvis in this stark musical doc set in a maximum security prison.

Full Review… | June 5, 2012
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic

[It] gets across a general notion of music as universal solace. But the filmmakers hesitate at going deeper into the dark places of the prisoners' biographies and the storied prison itself.

Full Review… | June 3, 2012
New York Times
Top Critic

It finally feels too cautious, as if digging a little deeper might compromise the prevailing tone of tentative uplift.

Full Review… | May 29, 2012
Village Voice
Top Critic

McDonald's film ultimately boils down to being just another competent but slightly dull prison doc, albeit a toe-tapping one.

Full Review… | April 5, 2012
Time Out
Top Critic

The performances are fun, if musically only adequate -- there are no evident virtuosi languishing within Angola's walls -- and Chiarelli's attempts to frame matters philosophically fall a little flat.

Full Review… | April 4, 2011
Variety
Top Critic

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