Friday, December 5, 2008

JOE STRUMMER: THE FUTURE IS UNWRITTEN (Julien Temple, 2006, UK) Not nearly as good as the documentary WESTWAY TO THE WORLD but a personal and insightful documentary about one of the most intelligent and passionate rock ‘n roll artists of our times. His friends and peers share their intimate stories around a campfire and Julian Temple intersperses this dialogue with home movies and archival Clash footage. His London Calling radio program is used as a voice-over narrative transition to show his multi-faceted love for language and music. Maybe the only way to truly understand someone (or get as close as possible) is through their creative outlet and expression; in this way, we understand him more through his musical influences than his own voice! This is not your typical “talking head’ documentary; it flows without introduction, a fluid dialogue from one person to the next. What more can be said about Joe Strummer? He was a great songwriter, an important songwriter whose kind was rare though many musicians seek to mimic. The state of current rock music saddens me so maybe the next Joey Ramone or Joe Strummer is just around the corner. I wish more were said of his last album STREETCORE because I think it his greatest achievement since the final Clash record. Bono said what made him angry was that the Clash should still be making music. I disagree. I’m afraid they would be dinosaurs like U2 or THE ROLLING STONES and a mere shadow of their glory days, bands that have nothing important to say anymore and just churn out the same drivel. We had them for a short period of time. That’s enough. (B-)

No comments: