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Monday, June 3, 2013

Blu-Ray Review: The Rolling Stones Crossfire Hurricane



"Crossfire Hurricane" is the most recent in a long list of documentaries about arguably the greatest rock and roll band of all-time... The Rolling Stones.

Directed by Brett Morgen (Chicago 10, The Kid Stays In The Picture) and told by the band members themselves via archival interviews from Jagger, Richards, Watts, Wyman, Wood and Taylor.  "Crossfire Hurricane" offers the viewer a look behind the curtain at what it was like to be a Rolling Stone from their humble beginnings in 1962 through 1981.

We get the usual telling of The Rolling Stones history...

Formation of the band, Brian Jones' dies, Mick Taylor joins, "Exile On Main Street" is recorded etc, etc etc.  The only part of the film that feels fresh to me is the section of the film that covers the band's ill fated free concert at Altamont Speedway.

The footage shown is some of the most claustrophobic I have ever seen including a shot of Mick Jagger exiting a helicopter and immediately getting punched in the face. Watching the Altamont sequence really puts the viewer right into the danger that the band and audience must have felt and is definitely a highlight of the film.

Brett Morgen ends the film in the year 1981 even though there is still a whopping 32 years of Rolling Stones history to come.  Ronnie Wood joining the band feels rushed especially when he has held the 2nd guitarist spot fives times longer than Jones or Taylor.

There's also no talk of the band almost breaking up in 1986, no talk of Bill Wyman's retirement and no 40th anniversary coverage.  Instead the documentary just kind of ends.

Much of "Crossfire Hurricane" is very good but because of the time frame it omits the film feels incomplete and can definitely not be considered as the definitive documentary on The Rolling Stones.

Drumroll please... 7 out of 10 tongues!!!

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