The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part
The Walking Dead
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All Critics (13)
| Top Critics (3)
| Fresh (10)
| Rotten (3)
A warts-and-all tales of hubris and heavyweight beats.
Jones struck gold when both Lavelle and DJ Shadow opened their personal video vaults to him, and even if he does rely on a number of talking-head interviews, the film feels largely primary-source.
The problem is that Lavelle is unreflective about his journey to failure.
While The Man from Mo' Wax follows a conventional doc structure as it charts its subject's rise, fall and last-act resurgence, Jones finds more inventive ways of framing Lavelle's saga.
The Man from Mo'Wax tells the tale of a destructive genius and the collateral damage left in his wake.
It's fascinating viewing for anyone who wants to try to figure out how someone who 'had it all' could have let it all go so horribly wrong.
Certainly a fascinating watch and never anything but engaging - but you're left feeling that this is far from the full story of James Lavelle, and instead it's maybe more put together to tell a cinematic narrative.
This is scorched earth documentary filmmaking, all justified by the fact that Jones does eventually manage to justify why Lavelle is some kind of a genius.
While it's obvious that fans of Lavelle and his many creative ventures will get the most out of The Man From Mo'Wax, this remains a fascinating insight into both the hubris and vulnerability of the music industry.
Director Matthew Jones offers fascinating snapshots of the last golden age of underground music and the final flowering of British youth culture.
Though Lavelle is upfront about the bridges he needlessly burned along the way, the film is also sympathetic to the need for big-picture thinkers like him.
A bigger question goes unanswered: was trip-hop really that important? Looking back, it seems rather joyless and po-faced.
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