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critics consensus

Scattered and uneven, Take Me to the River never adds up to much in terms of narrative documentary, but the music it honors is more than powerful enough to compensate. Read critic reviews

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Take Me to the River Photos

Movie Info

Music legends from Stax records and Memphis mentor and pass on their musical knowledge to contemporary artists.

Cast & Crew

Rick Clark
Screenwriter
Jerry Harrison
Screenwriter
Julie Janata
Screenwriter
Martin Shore
Screenwriter
Zac Stanford
Screenwriter
John Beug
Producer
Cody Dickinson
Original Music
Nathan Black
Cinematographer
Maxx Gillman
Film Editor
Julie Janata
Film Editor
Brent Mason
Art Director
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News & Interviews for Take Me to the River

Critic Reviews for Take Me to the River

All Critics (27) | Top Critics (11) | Fresh (20) | Rotten (7)

  • The film's interest in contemporary performers doesn't rob it of a sense of history.

    August 28, 2019 | Full Review…
  • Flawed as it is, "River" reminds us where all the great music came from.

    September 25, 2014 | Full Review…
  • Three of the guitar marvels shown here - Hubert Sumlin, Teenie Hodges and Skip Pitts - have died since filming. This is a marginal but worthwhile footnote to their legacy.

    September 25, 2014 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
  • The premise for this documentary couldn't be more stilted, and some of the matchups are enough to make you wince. But there are a few striking intergenerational moments.

    September 25, 2014 | Full Review…
  • It feels like a mishmash effort overall, more a home movie than a theatrical release. That's fine. If you approach it on those terms, you can't help but feel the love, too.

    September 25, 2014 | Rating: 2.5/5 | Full Review…
  • There's some talk about the collaboration's significance, and there's some racially charged history to relate, but the real point is to hear these oldsters one last time, to remember and maybe even discover what they gave us.

    September 18, 2014 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • The film's interest in contemporary performers doesn't rob it of a sense of history.

    August 28, 2019 | Full Review…
  • Flawed as it is, "River" reminds us where all the great music came from.

    September 25, 2014 | Full Review…
  • Three of the guitar marvels shown here - Hubert Sumlin, Teenie Hodges and Skip Pitts - have died since filming. This is a marginal but worthwhile footnote to their legacy.

    September 25, 2014 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
  • The premise for this documentary couldn't be more stilted, and some of the matchups are enough to make you wince. But there are a few striking intergenerational moments.

    September 25, 2014 | Full Review…
  • While those sessions result in full songs, some of the most memorable, iconic tunes in music history, this film never coalesces into something greater than a collection of mildly interesting pieces.

    July 7, 2020 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…
  • It's fun to be a fly on the wall in these recording sessions held in historic spaces, and the camaraderie and respect between the players is evident.

    January 8, 2020 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Take Me to the River

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