Throw Down Your Heart - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Throw Down Your Heart Reviews

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December 15, 2013
Bela Fleck's flick is an incredible journey of music
May 10, 2013
I may be biased on this one. As a huge Fleck fan, I saw the premier in Central Park after a particularly awesome concert. It was a neat experience.
November 6, 2012
Bela Fleck compels this documentary forward through his skilled playing, but it still feels repetitive and lacking the substance and weight that many other documentarians, such as Herzog, seem to portray and capture. It is a beautiful look into Africa and the culture of music there.
½ July 1, 2012
Wonderful panoramic view of the music of sub-Saharan Africa and an American's collaboration with these superb musicians.
May 28, 2011
For the love of music. Awesome movie :)
April 10, 2011
This documentary is full of emotion, adventure, and wonderful music. The brave and virtuosic Béla Fleck takes the banjo in the only direction left untraveled by him, directly into its African roots. With a humble spirit and collaborative skills honed over a lifetime of performing and recording, Béla and his fellow travelers and hosts create an enchanting narrative that leaps from one African culture to another, each with its own deep traditions, players, and instrumentation. With a hypnotic energy, the music will lift your heart and make you feel like dancing. Celebrate life, music, and the banjo and enjoy this film!
½ December 22, 2010
wonderful...wonderful...if i cld only play something id give you a tune about it! Roots, there & back again, reason why music is the universal language of love...
½ May 18, 2010
Bela Fleck, in a documentary by Sascha Paladino, travels to Africa to learn of the origins of the Banjo. He travels all across Africa to see the early forms of the banjo and play music with locals, professional musicians, and even international stars. This movie is a joy for music lovers and lovers of African traditional music. Bela Fleck does not talk much but he spreads his joy and passion of music to the people of Africa. They readily accept him into their circle and there are many joyous jam sessions. This is not one to miss.

BĂ©la Fleck is often considered the premier banjo player in the world. He has won more than a dozen Grammy Awards.
May 1, 2010
if you have a love of music, of learning more about Africa, of learning more about how to make instruments, how to have love for life, see this. it is really beautiful.
½ April 27, 2010
My favorite stuff: music and culture and travel. Outstanding study of a great musician seeking other musicians, except he couldn't use craigslist to find these dudes. Bela loves the people he meets, and his humbling demeanor ingratiates and enriches those people as they do for him. One of those 'if you do not like it, what planet are you living on' movies.
April 24, 2010
Bela Fleck's vision of playing with African musicians is realized in this documentary and the result is a combination of a travel film and a concert film. It's clear that Fleck wasn't looking for overproduced music influenced by Western pop, but the real music of the people living in Uganda, Tanzania, Gambia and Mali. One of the amusing things about this movie is realizing that Bela Fleck is really a pretty unexciting guy who is able to communicate through music and energize his environment in that manner.
March 7, 2010
tres beau voyage, en Afrique et en musique.
February 24, 2010
So this takes the standard "white guy goes to Africa" movie and turns it into something surprisingly affecting. Great great great music. This is a terrific "how art is made" movie and a nice "getting to know Africa a little better" experience and definitely a "wow, I guess banjo isn't so bad" shocker.
December 7, 2009
Worth seeing just for the jam sessions, but Bela Fleck really doesn't have enough personality to carry a feature length documentary. But still, the jam sessions he has with various African musicians are freakin' wonderful.
October 25, 2009
An enjoyable hour and a half in the theater that would have been even more enjoyable had it been 70 minutes or so.

The movie's strengths: the music and the musicians. Discovering these talents and these instruments was a real surprise and a true joy. And Bela Fleck helped. He came across as a quiet, accepting and appreciative participant, less the star than the student (though his prodigious talent is quite evident.)

As a movie; i.e., a story as well as a visual and auditory experience; I was somewhat less impressed. It was choppy and it rambled like the filmmaker was exploring the neck of the banjo for a new tune. While there were charming personal moments, like the exchange between his Ugandan host and the host's wife, and some good footage of African life (I speak from seven years living in Africa and travels to over 20 African countries), the bouncing around, the switchbacks from house to house, artist to artist, were somewhat disorienting. And, it was at least 15 minutes too long. Far too many tidy closing scenes were passed up for another musical lick or mildly heartwarming exchange.

In the end, however, the music and the feeling that you've shared a simple journey of discovery win out and you leave the theater thankful that you've been invited.
½ July 12, 2009
I liked getting the chance to learn about the contemporary folk scenes in Uganda, Tanzania, The Gambia, Senegal & Mali.
May 11, 2009
I probably won't watch this one.
May 4, 2009
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½ April 30, 2009
awesome. simply awesome.
Super Reviewer
April 29, 2009
Interesting music doc about Bela Fleck's trip to Africa to reintroduce the banjo to the country that gave birth to it.
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