Standing in the Shadows of Motown - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Standing in the Shadows of Motown Reviews

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June 15, 2011
Bra och intressant dokumentär om dom okända musikerna som spelade på alla Motowns superhits
May 30, 2011
absolutely fantastic from start to finish. AMAZING music and story. it's about the funk brothers, a group that played on more number one hits than the beach boys, the rolling stones, elvis and the beatles combined! not to be missed!!!
February 21, 2011
If you like music, watch this documentary! I gotta get the soundtrack for sure!!!
January 3, 2011
A fantastic look at the men behind more number-one hit records than The Beatles, The Beach Boys, The Rolling Stones and Elvis combined. Interviews interwoven with archival footage, re-enactments, and live performances, Standing in the Shadows of Motown is funny, informative, moving and energetic.
December 26, 2010
Great documentary with very good concert footage. This film is a good start on getting some long overdue recognition for some amazing musicians.
November 21, 2010
Just watched this one for the 2nd time, it is an outstanding documentary helping to shed light on some unsung heroes of some of the all-time top songs that came out of Motown. There's excellent interviews with the surviving members of the Funk Brothers who were the session band members of most of the top Motown singles. Some good covers of great songs are featured in the concert reunion footage. Seek this one out!
November 19, 2010
Standing in the Shadows of Motown is a 2002 docu-tribute to the studio musicians that manufactured Berry Gordy's Motown Sound. And it's a damn good one.

After 40 years, the surviving members reunite to back covers of almost two dozen Motown classics by an assortment of current artists such as Joan Osborne and Chaka Khan. (Khan is surprisingly somewhat less than soulful, but but Osborne definitely brings it home.)

Perhaps it is all staged for the camera, but still, even after all those years, this group of studio musicians looks very, very tight indeed.

Intermingled with the performances are interviews, history and personal reflections that bring these studio musicians - self-dubbed "the Funk Brothers" - and how they went about creating the Motown sound right on up into the limelight.

At one point someone states that these arrangements were so strong that they could have brought a chicken into the studio, "squeezed it by the neck on 2 and 4" and they would have had a hit.

And, indeed, this movie makes it quite obvious that we have all overlooked that it was these musicians - and their often improvised and inspired arrangements - as much as the lead singers that made these songs so strong.

The DVD extras include 13 of the tracks, back-to-back. At the end nearly one hundred eternally memorable Motown titles scroll - all attributed to The Funk Brothers.

RECOMMENDATION: This DVD provides hours of feel-good music video on demand. Recommended without reservation.
½ November 3, 2010
not what I was expecting
½ August 10, 2010
(Watched Sat 30 May 2009)
½ June 27, 2010
Great story brings much more appreciation and awareness to the true souls who put the soul in Motown. Amazing performances by Joan Osbourne and others. Great interviews and insight. Just wish it came with the complete concert footage on a second disc.
½ June 3, 2010
F for FUNK, brother.
May 25, 2010
Solid both as a doc and as a concert film. The Funk Brothers' music is so ingrained in the American music culture that many people, myself included, consider a lot of those songs as having always been there. The fact that they made so many memorable melodies is absolutely mind boggling.
May 17, 2010
U havent seen Motown?
April 14, 2010
This is a must-see documentary for anyone who loves Motown and the music. Ever wonder where that unforgettable guitar intro to "My Girl" came from? From someone who never got a credit on the Temptations' album. This is the story of the Funk Brothers and their contribution to pop music. Great, great movie.
½ April 14, 2010
Had a lot of fun watching this documentary. I will never forget the Funk Brothers.
February 21, 2010
I had no idea! The Funk Bros. are musical gods. And nobody knows the real story. All the songs my elders played on the radio. Temptations, The 4 Tops, Marvin Gaye, Supremes, etc. Even the new R&B and Hip-Hop still sampling from these guys. Almost a shame. None the less, this documentary was an awesome watch for the musical history and performances. Seeing that these old guys still got the groove. But some of the stylistic choices in the filming were a bit tacky and or experimental for the worse. All that being said, good music is good music!
January 25, 2010
Magnificent movie. Great music. I was shocked to hear Joan Osborne sing (beautifully) with these seasoned pros.
January 5, 2010
Still in my top all time 3 movies ever, after all these years.
½ November 27, 2009
the funk brothers,story of the sound behind the face....
Super Reviewer
November 25, 2009
Fantastic documentary about a group of unknown musicians, self-named The Funk brothers who were the musical force behind so many of the Motown classics; partnering Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, the Four Tops, Smokey Robinson... name a hit, and chances are, they were playing on it. Narrated by Andre Braugher, the film for the most part keeps him in the background and lets the musicians speak for themselves, and they do in a series of gentle stories and anecdotes. mixed with sadness about the musicians they lost along the way. The reminiscing is interleaved with a recent reunion concert where, if you weren't convinced so far, they prove once again that their contribution to the Motown sound was priceless. If you're a fan of the music already, this is a must-see.
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