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Churchill
Churchill (2017)
18 hours ago via Rotten Tomatoes
½

World War II is one of the most powerful eras in the history of human civilization. That is because it displayed the absolute best and worst of humanity. Because the two polar opposites were so extreme in their differences, they also led to the creation of some of the greatest and most memorable movies of all time. Movies such as Patton, Tora Tora Tora, the Longest Day and so many others have gone on to become cinematic masterpieces despite being movies based on actual events. On June 2, 2017, yet another movie added itself to that list of movies certain to become unforgettable works centered on WWII when Salon Pictures debuted Churchill. Churchill, while being another movie based on actual events, is still a WWII-centric cinematic experience that is certain to engage and entertain audiences across the board. That is due in part to its central story, which will be discussed shortly. The work of the movie's cast cannot be ignored either. It is just as notable as the movie's story, and will be discussed later. Last but hardly least of note here is the work of those responsible for the cast's costumes and makeup as well as finding sets that would make the movie even more realistic. Each element is undeniably important in its own right to the movie's whole. All things considered, they make Churchill a movie that lovers and students of history and military history alike will appreciate.

Salon Pictures' new WWII-centric movie Churchill is not the first time that a movie studio has ever focused on a famed figure from that awful war. Even with this in mind, it still proves itself a biopic/based on actual events story that lovers and students of history and military history alike will appreciate. That is due in part to the movie's central story. The story focuses on British Prime Minister Winston Churchill's difficult decision whether or not to have British forces take part in the Normandy invasion that the world now knows as D-Day. Throughout the course of the story, audiences see a side of Churchill that has rarely, if ever, been shown in movies or on television. Rather than the strong, confident man that history has presented Churchill as being, he is shown here as an emotionally fragile man. A man who is struggling to come to terms with the death of so many British soldiers during WWI. That struggle leads him to struggle with the decision of whether or not British forces should take part in D-Day and the impact that it has on not only him, but those around him, too. Those around him include his own wife, who according to this story, nearly leaves him as a result of his internal struggle, his secretary, whose fiancé is scheduled to take part in the D-Day invasion and his fellow British and even American counterparts. Keeping all of this in mind, the man vs. himself storyline is really nothing new to the cinematic world (and the literary world). Even with that in mind, audiences will find themselves completely pulled into the story, waiting to see how long it takes Churchill (played expertly by Brian Cox - Braveheart, The Bourne Identity, The Bourne Supremacy) to finally come to his epiphany and to come to terms with the past. Cox's work and that of his cast mates will be discussed shortly. Keeping all of this in mind, even though Churchill's story is essentially another based-on-actual events story with a familiar man vs. himself center, it is still a work that the previously noted audiences will appreciate because it is a story that has rarely if ever, been told. It is only one of the movie's key elements. The work of the movie's cast is just as important to note in examining the movie as its story.

The work put in by Churchill's cast is so important to note in examining the movie's whole because it is just as much to thank for audiences' maintained engagement and entertainment throughout the movie. As already noted, Cox's take on the movie's titular figure leads the way. From one end of the emotional spectrum to the other, Cox makes Churchill a strong sympathetic figure for which viewers will feel so much emotion throughout the movie. Whether in his powerful arguments with his British officers and American Gen. Ike Eisenhower, his equally moving moments in which he is forced to confront the past or even his own personal moments with his wife Clemmie (Miranda Richardson - Empire of the Sun, Sleepy Hollow, The Phantom of the Opera), Cox handles every moment expertly, keeping viewers fully engaged. While Richardson does not appear on screen as much as Cox, she still adds her own depth to the movie as she takes on Clemmie's own emotional struggle in dealing with Winston. While the pair are the movie's main stars, they are not the movie's only notables. John Slattery (Mad Men, Iron Man 2, Captain America: Civil War) and Ella Purnell (Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children, Kick-Ass 2, Never Let Me Go) add their own touch to the movie, too as Gen. Eisenhower and as Churchill's secretary Helen Garrett. Between their performances, those of Cox and Richardson, and the rest of the cast, the work put in by all involved forms a solid foundation for Churchill. The foundation formed by the cast's work is really the movie's most critical element considering the familiarity of the story's style and approach. Whether or not Cox, Richardson or any of their cast mates are deserving of awards for their performances can be debated for days. Awards or not, one cannot argue how impressive the cast is on screen. Keeping that in mind, it becomes clear why the work of Churchill's cast is so important to the movie's whole. Even with its clear importance, it still is not the last of the movie's most crucial elements. The work of those behind the cameras - most notably those responsible for the movie's look - deserves its own credit.

The work put in by Churchill's costume, makeup and set departments put the finishing touch to the movie's presentation. It is thanks to their work that while the movie overall has a very streamlined look, it also boasts a look similar to its forebears. Audiences will marvel at the vintage military uniforms worn by Slattery and Danny Webb, who plays Field Marshall Alan Brooke. Much the same can be said of Mr. and Mrs. Churchill's attire. The backdrops used for each scene do just as much to take viewers back in time as do the camera lenses and other visual tools used throughout the movie. The whole of those visual tools and effects leaves the movie's visual presentation just as solid as the work of the movie's cast. When the two elements are coupled with the movie's story that is given, basic and familiar especially for war movies, the whole of those elements makes the movie worth at least one watch by lovers and students of history and military history.

Salon Films' recently released WWII-centered human drama Churchill is a movie that is certain to appeal to lovers and students of history and more specifically military history. That is thanks in part to a story that while not exactly anything new to the military history genre (or drama genre) is still an interesting new take on one of the most famed figures of the war. The work of the movie's cast forms the movie's foundation. If for no other reason than the cast's work, audiences will want to watch this movie. The movie's look puts the finishing touch on Churchill's presentation. The work put in by the movie's costume and makeup department couples with the work put in by those responsible for choosing the movie's sets and those behind the lenses to put the finishing touch on the movie. That work and that of the movie's cast are what make suspension of disbelief in this otherwise average modern war movie possible. In turn, they are what make the movie appealing at least to lovers and students of history and military history. Churchill is available now in stores and online. More information on this and other titles from Cohen Media Group is available online now at:



Website: http://www.cohenmedia.net



Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/CohenMediaGroup



Twitter: http://twitter.com/cohenmediagroup



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Soul on a String
11 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes
½

Late last month, independent movie company Film Movement brought the Chinese epic Soul on a String to audiences when it released the movie domestically on DVD. The movie, which originally debuted in its home nation June 15, 2016 and domestically Oct. 22, 2016 at the Chicago International Film Festival, is a an interesting cinematic experience. It crosses elements of east and west for a story that makes the movie worth at least one watch. The story will be discussed shortly. While the story itself makes the movie worth at least one watch, its pacing sadly detracts quite a bit from the movie's overall presentation. It will be discussed later. While it takes away quite a bit from the movie's presentation, the movie's stunning cinematography makes up for that pacing and makes it at least somewhat bearable. It will be discussed later, too. Each element is key to the overall presentation of Soul on a String. All things considered, the movie survives by more than a thread.

China's imported epic journey of self-discovery Soul on a String is one of 2017's most intriguing independent home releases. Released domestically by Film Movement, the movie follows one man's journey of redemption as he tries to return a sacred stone to its rightful place. If this sounds oddly familiar, it should. Disney's hit animated movie Moana presents a very similar story, just with some minor changes. In the case of the latter movie, the protagonist is a young woman on a coming-of-age journey as she travels to return a sacred stone to its rightful place. Considering that Soul on a String came along first (Moana debuted Nov. 23, 2016 domestically, roughly five months after Soul on a String debuted in China), one can't help but wonder about the connection between the two. Getting back on the subject at hand, the story at the center of Soul on a String is in itself reason enough to give this movie at least one watch. Audiences will be moved by Tabei's personal growth over the course of his journey. He starts out a very reluctant figure, wanting nothing to do with the journey or his two unlikely companions who join him along the way. However, as his journey progresses, Tabei becomes more welcoming of them and grows personally, accepting even more his journey and fate. That growth over time makes the problematic pacing of the nearly two-and-a-half-hour movie almost bearable. Speaking of that pacing, it is the movie's one major negative. It is a major issue for the movie's presentation, too.

The pacing of Soul on a String's story is the movie's only real notable negative. That may not seem like much on the surface, but in the grand scheme of the movie's two hour, twenty-two minute run time, it is extremely problematic. Obviously the story's intent is to follow Tabei on his long journey. However, the story's pacing plods along at points nearly at a snail's pace, making one quite encouraged to fast forward through those many points. In defense of the movie's writing team of Zhaxidawa and writer/director Yang Zhang, the movie's oftentimes dragging pace could have been fully intentional as a means to illustrate the length of Tabei's journey. If that is the case, then it definitely leaves viewers feeling like they are right there on that expansive journey. Regardless of whether or not that was the intent, the pacing's problematic nature cannot be ignored. That is especially the case when there is so little actual action to the story. Luckily, as problematic as the story's pacing is, it is not enough of a problem that it makes the movie unwatchable. The movie's cinematography makes that plodding pace at least somewhat bearable.

Soul on a String won the "Best Cinematography" award at the Shanghai International Film Festival last year at the film's Chinese debut. That win was fully justified, too. From start to finish, those behind the cameras and those charged with putting those shots together did an exceptional job of setting each of the movie's scenes. The vast expanses with their rich colors (both on land and in sky) are visually stunning throughout the movie. The same can be said of the tight canyons through which Chung and Pu are forced to travel late in the story. Each scene harkens back to the American Westerns which the movie strives (and succeeds) to emulate. As a matter of fact, it could easily be argued that the scenes established in this movie actually outdo those in their American counterparts. Audiences will revel in the juxtaposition of the lake to the mountains in the story's final act and the natural beauty of the countryside throughout Tabei's journey. All things considered, the visual aspect of Soul on a String is truly the movie's cornerstone. It makes this Chinese import worth watching even more than the epic journey of self-discovery at its heart. Of course when both elements are set alongside one another, they make the movie's pacing throughout an issue that while clearly problematic, is also at least somewhat bearable. Keeping all of this in mind, Soul on a String proves to be an independent offering worth at least one watch and that survives by more than a thread.

Soul on a String is a work that while definitely not perfect, thanks to its pacing, is one that is worth at least one watch.  That is thanks to its story and cinematography, which collectively ensure viewers' engagement at least through most of its nearly two-and-a-half-hour run time.  If not for the positives that both elements prove, the movie's plodding pacing would have ultimately doomed it.  That--again-was not the case, though.  Since it wasn't the case, the movie ultimately survives by more than a thread.  It is available now.  More information on this and other titles from Film Movement is available online now at:



Website: http://filmmovement.com



Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/FilmMovement



  Twitterhttp://twitter.com/Film_Movement



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Hickok
Hickok (2017)
32 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes

Independent movie studio Cinedigm recently released its new Western offering Hickok to audiences on 4KHD/BD combo pack in stores and online. While the movie is loaded with impressive cinematography and a cast composed of well-known actors, it still sadly falls short both within the Western genre and in the bigger picture of this year's new cinematic offerings, both on the big and small screen. That is due primarily to a story that is rife with problems. This will be discussed later. The work of lead stars Luke Hemsworth and Trace Adkins' is one more saving grace for this otherwise forgettable entry in the Western world. Keeping all of this in mind Hickok proves ultimately to be worth at least one watch, but sadly not much more.

Hickok, Cinedigm's new addition to the lengthy list of movies telling Wild Bill Hickok's story is a work that Western fans will agree is worth watching at least once, but sadly not much more than that. That is due at least in part to the movie's cinematography. From the movie's Civil War opening scene to the seemingly constant shootout scenes that fill the movie's 88-minute run time (it seems like the movie relies on those scenes more than anything else on a side note, which will be discussed later) to the simplicity of the jail scenes and more, those behind the cameras are to be applauded for their work in making the movie bearable. That is because they manage so well to capture the energy and the emotion of each scene, whether the scene be something light-hearted, something tense or outright energetic. The movie's opening scene, which presents Bill Hickok as a Union Commander during the Civil War, is a prime example of the talent of those abilities. The movie's camera crew expertly captured the tension and energy of what it must have been like to be combatant in the war. The problem with that scene is that it really has almost no bearing on the rest of the movie. Audiences are left to wonder about the scene's role until much later in the movie's run. This, too will be discussed later.

The scenes inside the Bull's Head Saloon, while not as action packed as other scenes, are more prime examples of the talents of the movie's camera crew. While the scenes are relatively simple, the camera crew's work does a good job of capturing what is believed to have been everyday life in an old west saloon. From the guys playing poker to the women working the building as the men drank and played cards to other mundane items, their work expertly captured those scenes, which are among some of the movie's best moments.

The movie's constant shoot-out scenes are just as notable as the other noted scenes in explaining the importance of Hickok's cinematography. That is because those scenes evoke a certain amount of tension without much effort. From one scene to the next, the camera crew's talents are on constant display, even when no shots are fired. That is saying a lot, too. It shows yet again just how much work was put into this movie's cinematography. When it is joined with the other noted examples and so many other moments, the whole of those moments makes fully clear why this movie's cinematography carries it-at least in part-on its back. Keeping this in mind, the movie is not without at least one major flaw. That flaw is its writing.

From its start to its end, Hickok's script, crafted by Michael Lanahan, presents so many problems including a complete lack of any back story to set the stage for this presentation. Audiences know, thanks to the movie's opening Civil War scene, that allegedly Bill Hickok served as a Union Commander during the conflict. From there, the movie jumps randomly to a scene of Hickok being awoken, naked, in a tub by a pair of lawmen for apparently stealing a horse. There's no back story here, either. If that is the past that he is trying to escape (the premise on the back of the movie's box states he is trying to escape his past), then that is not much of a bad past. That in itself becomes extremely problematic since it doesn't give audiences much reason to sympathize with Hickok. The only real hint of a bad past that audiences get comes late in the story as it is revealed that Hickok might have been a Union spy. Even that though doesn't play into who Hickok is in this movie. As if all of this is not bad enough, Hickok's meeting with evil saloon owner Phil Poe (Trace Adkins) seems to happen as randomly as Hickok becoming the Marshal of Abilene, Kansas as does the revelation of Hickok's previous relationship with Mattie, who apparently is engaged to Poe. The problems with the movie's script don't end with the items noted here. From seemingly random scene and mood shifts to other plot holes that the story barely attempts to fill, this script leaves the movie's nearly 90-minute run time feel like it is far longer. Thankfully, the work of Hemsworth and Adkins works on its own to make those problems bearable if not forgivable.

Hemsworth, who is most well-known for his work on Westworld, The Anomaly and Infini slides into his role as the infamous old west gunslinger just as expertly as those who recorded his work. His cool-natured approach to the famed figure echoes back to the days of Gary Cooper in 'High Noon' and even somewhat to Ed Harris' take of Virgil Cole in Appaloosa. It shows his ability to handle even this kind of role, even despite what little he had to work with in the movie's script. It's just too bad that he had to show that ability while having to tackle his character's presentation in that script.

On a similar note, Trace Adkins, who is himself no stranger to Westerns-he previously starred in Stagecoach: The Texas Jack Story, Traded and The Virginian-is spot on as the vile Phil Poe. It would have been so easy for him to overact here, which he has done in his previous efforts. In this case though, his portrayal of the suave yet villainous saloon owner leaves one easily hating Poe, which is a tribute to his talents. It shows finally that maybe, just maybe, he does indeed have some potential as an actor. Considering this, his work shows just as much as that of Hemsworth to be critical in making this movie bearable if only for one watch. When the duo's work is joined with the movie's cinematography, the two elements do just enough to save Hickok.

Cinedigm's latest jaunt into the Western world is a movie that is worth at least one watch by those who are fans of the genre. Sadly though, it is not worth much more than that. That is due in large part to a story that suffers from problems of plotholes, pacing and so much more. Luckily, the movie's cinematography and the work of its lead stars makes up for the shortcomings of that script. One could even argue that the movie's production crew, responsible for the movie's sets, and those behind the costumes and makeup, deserve some credit, too. While their contributions do serve to help the movie some more, the whole of those elements and the previously noted elements still are not enough to make up for a story that misses every one of its marks. It is available now in stores and online. More information on this and other titles from Cinedigm is available online now at:







Website: http://www.cinedigmentertainment.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Cinedigm

Twitter: http://twitter.com/cinedigm







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Terror in a Texas Town
32 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes

Late this past July, independent movie company Arrow Academy re-issued the little-known classic Western flick Terror in a Texas Town on Blu-ray. While perhaps not the most well-known offering from the "Western World," it is in fact a movie that Western fans and cinephiles alike will appreciate. That statement applies regardless of audiences' familiarity with the movie. This is due in part to the movie's central story, which will be discussed shortly. The work of the movie's cast plays its own part in the movie's enjoyability and will be discussed later. The bonus material included in the movie's recent re-issue rounds out its most important elements. Each element is important in its own right to the re-issue's overall presentation. All things considered, they make Arrow Academy's re-issue of Terror in a Texas Town anything but a terror.

Arrow Academy's recent re-issue of United Artists' 1958 Western Terror in a Texas Town is a work that is anything but a terror. Yes, that awful pun was fully intended. That statement is supported in part through the movie's story. Written by Dalton Trumbo, the movie's story follows a relatively familiar plot yet does so with a few alterations to that all too familiar plot. Trumbo's story follows protagonist George Hansen (Sterling Hayden-The Godfather, Dr. Strangelove, The Asphalt Jungle) as he sets out to avenge his father's death. In the way of that vengeance is the standard evil businessman/landowner McNeill (Sebastian Cabot-The Many Adventures of Winnie The Pooh, The Jungle Book, The Sword in the Stone) and his henchman, Johnny Crale (Nedrick Young-Inherit The Wind, The Defiant Ones, Jailhouse Rock). One of the most notable variations incorporated into this story is that Hansen comes in not as the incoming Sheriff who typically fights the bad guys, but a man from another land. This element is discussed more in-depth in the bonus material and will be touched on later. In other words, this story isn't the standard man in white versus the man in black story. It is just a man who wants justice and (not to give away too much here) gets it without going around the town shooting all the bad guys. That in itself is another variant that can't be ignored here. Along with those variants, audiences will also notice that the underlying romance subplot that is all too common in so many other is absent from this story, too. Its absence here makes the story all the more engaging for audiences, proving even more that a good story doesn't necessarily need all of the clichés of a genre to be enjoyable. The fact that Trumbo left so many Western clichés out of this story, opting instead for something more directed and focused also played positively into the movie's roughly 80-minute run time, ensuring even more audiences' maintained engagement. What's more, the lack of those clichés also is obviously what led to the movie's 80-minute run time. If all those unnecessary items had been added to the story, it likely would have been far longer in terms of its run time and even less well-known. Keeping all of this in mind, it becomes clear why the story at the center of Terror in a Texas Town is such an important part of the movie's whole. It also becomes clear why the story is so entertaining and engaging from start to finish. With this in mind, the movie's story is only one of its most important elements. The work of the movie's cast is just as important to discuss as its story.

The work of the cast in Terror in a Texas Town is so critical to the movie's overall presentation because the cast's work is just as simple as the story. This is not a bad thing, either. From Hayden's confidence as George Hansen to Cabot's diabolical McNeill and even to Young's work as Johnny Crale, and beyond, every cast member here does just enough to make their characters believable. Audiences will be especially moved by the subtlety in Young's portrayal of Crale as Crale clearly is struggling internally with who he is and was. The way that Young handle's Crale, there almost seems to be a hint that Crale doesn't like being a hired gun anymore and has second thoughts about what he is doing despite convincing himself in the end of his place. Even in the case of Cabot and Hayden, their performances are spot on. Cabot, even in his few on-screen appearances still manages to make audiences know McNeill is the evil businessman without going over the top. Hayden echoes hints of Gary Cooper (which is also discussed in the re-issue's bonus material) in his simplistic approach. Between all of this and the work of the rest of the movie's cast, so much can be such of the cast's work, all of it positive. Audiences will see that for themselves when they check out this movie for themselves. Keeping this in mind, it becomes clear why the work of this movie's cast is just as important to its presentation as the movie's story. It still is not the last of the movie's most important elements. The bonus material included in its recent re-issue rounds out its most important elements.

The bonus material featured in Arrow Academy's recent re-issue of Terror in a Texas Town includes an in-depth introduction to the movie and an analysis of its cinematography from author Peter Stanfield. Stanfield, known best for his book Hollywood, Westerns and the 1930s-The Lost Trail and Horse Opera: The Strange History of the Singing Cowboy, explains what makes Terror in a Texas Town so many other Westerns and what also sets it apart from those flicks. Audiences learn through Stanfield's discussions that while Trumbo's story was, on its outermost level a Western, it was on a deeper level, an allegory about personal freedoms. This is key as he connects it to the impact of Joseph McCarthy's witch hunt on Trumbo, Hayden and even Young. This discussion alone adds so much more depth to the movie's overall presentation. Stanfield's discussion on Trumbo's balance of classic Western elements with his own writing style here adds yet more depth to the movie's presentation as does his discussion on director Joseph H. Lewis' stylistic approach to the movie behind the lens. This is a discussion that any film production student and lover will appreciate. When these and other discussions included in the re-issue's bonus material is considered in whole, they prove collectively to be just as critical to the movie's presentation as the movie's story and the work of its actors. Collectively, those bonus discussions, the movie's story and the cast's work show Terror in a Texas Town to be a work that Western fans and movie history buffs alike will appreciate. That is even despite the movie being one of the lesser-known entries in the "Western world." It is available now in stores and online. More information on this and other titles from Arrow Academy is available online now at:







Website: http://arrowfilms.co.uk

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ArrowAcademy







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The Rolling Stones: Havana Moon
2 months ago via Rotten Tomatoes

The Rolling Stones have held countless concerts in nearly every corner of the world over the course of its nearly 55-year life. From the UK to Asia and across the Americas, the British rock outfit has been there and done that plenty of times. For all of the concerts that the band has held throughout its life, few have held or hold the importance of the concert that the band held on March 25, 2016. It was on that night that The Rolling Stones became the first rock band in the country's history to play a free concert in Havana. The concert came only days after President Barack Obama became the first American President in 88 years to pay a visit to the island nation. It was one of the most momentous occasions in the band's history, and this Friday audiences around the world will be able to see the concert for themselves when Havana Moon is released in stores and online. The concert boasts plenty of positives, beginning with its set list. That will be discussed shortly. The band's performance of its set list is just as important to note as the songs in examining the recording's overall presentation. It will be discussed later. The concert's companion booklet rounds out its most important elements. Each element is important in its own right to the concert's presentation. All things considered, they make Havana Moon a shining beacon in The Rolling Stones' extensive live catalogue.

Havana Moon, The Rolling Stones' new live recording, is a shining beacon in the band's extensive live catalogue. It is a landmark concert because there is no telling if the band will ever perform on the island nation again. It boasts plenty of positives, beginning with the show's set list. The show's 18-song set list features a favorable sampling of the band's most beloved songs including 'Honky Tonk Women,' 'Paint It Black,' 'Brown Sugar' and so many others. There are also some lesser known pieces included in the set list such as 'Angie,' 'You Got The Silver' and 'Out Of Control.' Audiences that pick up this record will find the show's musical mix relatively familiar due to that set list. While the set list may not necessarily break any new ground for the band, it was new ground for the audiences in attendance. Their appreciation for hearing the classic compositions shows throughout the concert. That appreciation by the audiences will make audiences more familiar with the set list that much more appreciative of the set list even despite already knowing said song. The familiar set list and the audience's appreciation of said set list do plenty to make Havana Moon an enjoyable recording. The band's performance of each song is just as important to note here as the songs themselves.

The songs that make up the body of Havana Moon are important in their own right to the recording's presentation. That is because while the songs are familiar to most audiences, they clearly were not so familiar to the Stones' Cuban audience. The audience's appreciation for the songs will generate a whole new appreciation for the songs among audiences who are more familiar with the songs. That is because seeing their reaction allows more seasoned audiences to experience the songs in a whole new light. While the songs and the audience's appreciation thereof are clearly important to the recording's presentation, they are not, collectively, the only important pieces of the recording's presentation. The band's performance of the show's set list is just as important to note as the set list itself. That is because many of the renditions presented in this concert are unlike any that the band has done before. The band's take of 'Pained Black' is just one of those unexpected performances. Most people know this song as being a rather powerful composition thanks to drummer Charlie Watts' work at the base of the song. Keith Richards' guitar line sits atop Watts' timekeeping and solidifies the song's instrumentation even more. The band's performance of the song in Havana is anything but what one would expect of the song. The band's performance of the song here is much more reserved than in its normal presentation. If the band has ever performed the song in the style presented here, then said instances are very rare. That makes this performance all the more important. The band's rendition of 'Honkey Tonk Women' stands out just as much here as that of 'Painted Black.' It is a little bit slower than the band's normal renditions, but not by too much; just enough to make it noticeable without taking anything away from the song in this case. Of course one cannot ignore the extended take of 'Midnight Rambler' here. The band's performance feels so organic even as it runs more than 15 minutes. It is one more example of how the band's performance stands out in this recording just as much as the songs chosen for the concert. There are plenty of other performances throughout the show that stand as examples of what makes the band's overall performance just as important to the recording's presentation as the songs themselves. All in all, they join with the performances noted here to show in whole why the band's performance of its set list is just as important to the recording's presentation as the show's set list. It still is not the last important element to discuss. The recording's companion booklet is just as important to note in its presentation as the show's set list and the band's performance thereof.

The set list that is featured in Havana Moon and the band's performance thereof are both important in their own right to the recording's overall presentation. Audiences who are familiar with the featured songs will gain a whole new appreciation for them as they see the Cuban audience-many of whom were experiencing the songs for the first time ever-show their own appreciation for getting to hear them. The band's performance is just as important to note here because in many cases, the band's performances of certain songs are completely unlike those in any other live setting. They give said songs brand new identities. Both elements are clearly important in their own right. Yet they are not the recording's only important elements. The recording's companion booklet is just as important to note in examining the recording's overall presentation as the show's set list and the band's performance. That is because it presents a rich background picture of the concert courtesy of Jonathan Watts. Watts starts the concert's story with a mention of President Obama making his own historic visit to Cuba only days before The Rolling Stones. From there, he highlights all of the work that went in to making the "Concert For Amity" a reality. It then transitions into the story of the concert. That story includes the reaction of both the band and the audience to one another. By the time Watts reaches the story's end, the importance of the concert becomes crystal clear. He shows through his story why this concert is an important part of not only The Rolling Stones' history but also of Cuba's history and that of the entire world. That understanding creates even more appreciation for the concert, and in turn, leaves audiences understanding that this is truly a special recording that Rolling Stones fans and music lovers alike should have in their music libraries.

Havana Moon is an important piece of Cuba's history. It is also an important part of The Rolling Stones' history and that of the whole world. The band isn't the first-ever band to perform in Cuba. But it is the first band to hold a free concert in the island nation's capital. From its set list to the band's performance to the recording's companion booklet, there is so much included here that serves to illustrate the importance of the concert. One could also cite the recording's editing, varied platforms on which it is available and much more to show why it is such an important performance. All things considered, Havana Moon shows itself in the end to be a recording that Rolling Stones fans and music lovers alike should have in his or her own music library. Havana Moon will be available Friday, November 11th in stores and online. More information on Havana Moon is available online along with all of The Rolling Stones' latest news and more at:







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