Movie Note: It Might Get Loud

Not that I was trying to get rid of him, but I brought up It Might Get Loud yesterday to see if the husband might like to go see it – with one of his friends, or maybe as a band field trip.  I didn’t get that far, because he jumped on it right away and signed us up for the very next showing.  I didn’t have the heart to tell him I really didn’t want to go.

A few minutes into the film, it dawned on me that I had just paid money to listen to guys noodling on guitars.  You have no idea how hard I work to minimize the time I spend listening to guys noodling.  I’ve been known to heckle noodlers quite relentlessly, so clearly, revenge was theirs.

I learned a few things I hadn’t known about each guitarist – mainly about Jimmy Page’s career as a studio musician.  Didn’t realize that The Edge used so many effects, and didn’t really know much about Jack White at all.

Hearing some of the U2 songs and seeing early concert footage stirred some memories and feelings, but I was caught off guard by the fact that it was the Zeppelin songs which really hit me hardest.  I think that when I discovered Led Zeppelin IV, I simply hadn’t heard as much good music as I had by the time U2’s War came out.  Plus, I’m a sucker for The Battle of Evermore.

I was struck by a segment with The Edge (maybe he’s a lowercase the Edge, or maybe just Edge?) playing some early four-tracks of one of their big hits.  The scene was shot in a tiny little kitchen with really homey tea towels and mugs, a smallish stove – it looked like an efficiency in a so-so part of town.  It made him seem incredibly likable.

None of the guitarists are my favorites, but if one of them were, I might have been bummed by the fact that I had to watch equal time from the other two.  They played together a bit, which was kind of cool, but not as electric as you might hope.  The conversation, playing, and story-telling didn’t get much past ankle deep.

I will credit Jack White for handling the whole thing with grace – I think you can call The Edge and Jimmy Page legends, but for all his talent, Jack White risks looking like a jerk if he compares himself to them too quickly.  So he didn’t.

While the Zeppelin songs hit me hardest, the U2 photos and video clips were my favorite part.  Remember that intensity?  The movie delves a very little bit into what the world was like in the late 70s, U2’s formative years, but does one shot of a bad car bombing and a long shot of the Dublin docks really tell the story?  Surely there is a good U2 documentary out there – that I might like to see.

Overall, I give it a meh.  More video montage than movie, with a little of the feel of the late-night Time-Life Ultimate Light Rock infomercials.  Ultimately, I’d rather listen to their music than hear them talk about it.

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