Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Frankie Says See This Film

Third film viewed at the fourth annual Oak Cliff Film Festival was dir. Brendan Toller's Danny Says–a documentary about journalist-cum-punk prophet Danny Fields, who is credited with introducing Jim Morrison to Nico, with almost ruining the careers of the Beatles, with introducing Iggy Pop to David Bowie, with forming Patti Smith's band, and with managing the Ramones. This is worthwhile cinema solely for its historical and biographical content. But more so: it's an entertaining and engaging film about an atypical personage who happened to have impeccable and prescient taste in music at an extraordinary time in its history.

The more I know about the world, people, and music of this era, the more insatiable my nostalgic desire for it.

A couple of criticisms, however. Some photographs were shown multiple times without explanation. It was sometimes impossible to figure out what this image had to do with what Fields was talking about at that moment. Also, many times the image appeared onscreen for too short a time. With the difficult-to-read font and the quick scan of the text required, too often I was baffled about what or who I was seeing and why. Finally, despite the compelling stories and enormity of the archival material presented, I would've enjoyed even more personal narrative about Fields himself. Certainly, he had personal relationships that didn't involve big-name celebrities. Who were his loves? Did he have pets? Did his musical sensibilities come solely from his role as a listener? Simply: I wanted to know more about him.

Eagerly awaiting the sequel.

Trailer can be viewed here.

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