Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt And The Magnetic Fields - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt And The Magnetic Fields Reviews

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December 28, 2010
Merritt seems to loathe the very idea of being in a movie. That impression lends a weird tension to Fix and O'Hara's otherwise affectionate and conventional account of his career to date.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
December 10, 2010
"Strange Powers" moves with lightness, verve and charm, which Magnetic Fields fans might find amusing, given Merritt's well-known morosity.
Read More | Original Score: B
November 18, 2010
In inviting us along to peek into the life, filmmakers Kerthy Fix and Gail O'Hara don't give us quite enough about the art.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
November 12, 2010
A most satisfying portrait of the artist as a middle-aged curmudgeon.
November 11, 2010
Overall, this is a nice introduction to an amiably dour tunesmith who once wrote that "all art aspires to the condition of Top 40 bubblegum pop."
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
November 11, 2010
A glimpse behind the curtain of creativity that makes a persuasive case for a tip of the cap to artistic enablers.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
November 5, 2010
For my part, I knew nothing about The Magnetic Fields before seeing the movie. I came out interested in hearing more of their discography.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
November 5, 2010
The film is a piecemeal mosaic through which Merritt drifts like a small dark cloud. It may not pierce to the heart of his art, but it comes as close as anyone's likely to get.
November 5, 2010
Clearly, the directors have to be Merritt advocates to hang in there that long, but the film that resulted has elements that keep it from being simply a fan's notes.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
November 2, 2010
Directors Kerthy Fix and Gail O'Hara offer a competent overview of a band. But a viewer unfamiliar with Merritt or the Magnetic Fields comes away with little further insight.
November 1, 2010
This portrait of the famed indie rock composer-musician is for fans only.
October 31, 2010
Of the million potential roads a documentary can take, the narrow, intimate route explored in Strange Powers seems like one of the least economical.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
October 29, 2010
Not only is the film a slog, the main focus is on the band's arguably inferior last decade.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
October 29, 2010
No matter your take on Merritt's persona, there's no denying that he's a unique musician whose songs -- such as "Papa Was a Rodeo" and "Living in an Abandoned Firehouse With You" -- are worth discovering. As is this film.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
October 28, 2010
reveals the nuance behind what for many is yet another undeservedly bitter and resentful musical genius
| Original Score: 3.5/5
October 28, 2010
Most fan-docs are fairly remedial, but Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt And The Magnetic Fields is more sophisticated than the norm, in keeping with its subject.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
October 28, 2010
A relaxed, enjoyable little documentary whose central figure emerges as a figure rendered in half-precise, half-diffuse pointillist dots
Full Review | Original Score: 8/10
October 28, 2010
A decent way to get to know a small group of New York-based musicians who have been performing together since the early 1990s.
October 27, 2010
A laconic, noodling documentary, Strange Powers: Stephen Merritt and the Magnetic Fields pecks gently at that shell but makes little effort to get underneath.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
October 27, 2010
Strange Powers should be a cautionary cultural prognosis. Instead, it's a promotional film.
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