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A great documentary about the music and personal life of one of the greatest musicians of the 20th century and gods of jazz.
This documentary leaves an enormous amount to be desired.There is far toouch focus
The music in this documentary about legendary Jazz musician Miles Davis is epic. It's intoxicating and mesmerizing. The story isn't quite on that level, but if you're into jazz or Davis you're probably in heaven. It's well-made and perfectly fine, but for a man who had many many flaws and had a rather dark side this is mostly a tribute. Might churn out a few new fans for those new to the subject. Final Score: 6.4/10
I bought my first 3 LP's when I joined the Columbia Record Club in the 7th grade, somewhere in the neighborhood of '59. Marty Robbin's Gunfighter Ballads, I forget the third, but the second was Mile's Elevator to The Gallows; I've never looked back. The Legend who provided us with Sketches.., Kind of Blue, the Prestige Quartet (Steamin' Workin' etc.) was revealed in somewhat greater detail, perhaps not with "all the warts on,' but certainly many of them exposed. Not a perfect documentary,l but more than adequate for his fans, and approachable for the uninitiated. Some of the footage I've seen (The 'So What' session as an example) and some (the Elevator to the Gallows scenes) where Mile's is improvising in real (and reel) time to the film as it is screened made up for any shortcomings. Definitely a must-see, and more than likely a must own. Diamonds are forever, DVR's are not.
Good movie. Wish it had gone more in depth with him. I wasn't impressed by the famous people being interviewed about him. The music was excellent but hard to get a feel for the real man.
OK a good movie, very slow… But the music made up for it… Great topic, but it felt like the The document her didn't have much access Two key characters in miles life. Still I came away feeling I knew him much better. Good movie
An excellent documentary about the jazz great. It mines Davis's autobiography, a rich collection of photography, and numerous interviews with his friends and family to tell of his background and long and influential career in jazz.
This movie will remind the true lovers of Jazz, that Miles Davis is a master, and his music is eternal !
Miles Davis was a jazz musician with a big impact on the music industry, even up to this day. A cultural phenomenon who didn't play by the rules, but did everything on his own terms and with success. Interestingly enough, there hasn't really been a decent documentary made about his life, until now.
Director Stanley Nelson takes us backstage and on to a journey into the highs and lows of Davis' career and personal life, with the respect this legend deserves. He shows us his road to success, breaks down his relationships and doesn't shy away from the darker side of his breakdown. Every strength and weakness get discussed in detail and analysed by professionals and musicians who had the chance to meet the man himself. From Quincy Jones and Carlos Santana to his children. For the hardcore fans, some of the footage might be familiar, but there is new material being shown that has been archived for years.
Miles Davis comes from a honourable family, but still has to deal with segregation in Illinois, in spite of his talent and success. After becoming a breakout star in the United States of America, he embarks on a European tour where he gets welcomed as a world star. Paris has a huge impact on his future career, but this dream doesn't last long as he needs to return back to New York, where he always felt like living in a confined domain. An addiction to heroin, and depression soon haunt him for the rest of his life. Always being afraid of becoming the mirror image of his abusive father, he becomes just that. His former partners speak out on the violence they had to endure and how they were able to escape that toxic environment.
His music gets analysed and we hear plenty of his early style of jazz - bebop - growing into the more experimental phase of his music into the 70s. His sound was unique, even when he reimagined himself completely when stepping back into the scene the last decade of his life. A king that will always be remembered by his success, style and class.
The film itself wants to connect mostly with a more familiar with jazz-audience than a younger one that grew up with poppy forgettable tunes. But when disregarding that certain audience, you might miss out on the opportunity to pull that group in and take them on that journey that is Miles Davis. You can tell his estate was heavily involved in the making of this film, by the amount of footage and music used - it's impressive and that's certainly understated. But what is noticeable in music docs this decade, is the lack of subjectiveness. This could make the film more visually pleasing and go even deeper into Davis' music and career.
Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool gives us a look at the legendary musician's tortured soul who was unpredictable in his actions as in his craft. He changed the game for everyone with his creativity and point of view. If only they showcased that bolder side of his personality, this film could've become something more than just solid.
Review by Seth Eelen for novastreamnetwork.com