Renaldo and Clara Reviews

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½ January 15, 2015
As a die-hard Dylan fan, I adore Renaldo and Clara. Perhaps I love it more for what it documents than as a film itself. Even the parts that are not a documentary per se' feature characters portrayed by people who play big parts in Dylan's world (Joan Baez, Allen Ginsberg etc.), I find importance in this. Most of all I enjoyed seeing Sara Dylan (by then Bob's Ex wife) acting in the vignette sections. Sara has inspired so many great Dylan songs, most notably "Sara" off of the 1975 Desire album and to be able to witness her and take her in felt very special to me. The concert footage is incredible and some of the performances are mind-blowing. At nearly 4 hours long this movie is hard to sit all the way through but I love it for what it is and for who and what it captured. It's my personal favorite time in Dylan's career.
March 13, 2013
At a whopping four hours in length, the main issue with Bob Dylan's directorial debut, "Renaldo and Clara" is that Dylan simply throws far too much into the cooking pot and doesn't correctly balance any of it. This is a messy compilation of concert footage, interviews, and instances of melodramatic fiction that all abruptly interrupt one another instead of smoothly transitioning into each other, and just drag on and on without a sense of purpose or accomplishment. It's not that "Renaldo and Clara" doesn't really seem to know what it wants to be, it's really just that Dylan was clearly afraid of straying too far from a project that didn't mostly concern his music for the sake of his audience's interest, but as a result, he ended up becoming far too self-indulgent with this glacial cure for insomnia of a film instead in the process.
March 13, 2011
To sit through this film you need to be a Bob Dylan film. If you are then it's worth the viewing otherwise it'll be confusing and boring. Watch for the rose being passed to the next person who is going to speak.
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