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Monday, November 10, 2014

"Pulp", singing for the common people

Pulp: A Film about Life, Death & Supermarkets
Beefeater In-Edit 2014, Chapter I

Our first rockumentary at this year's In-Edit was a highly expected one. I could develop my argument properly, but just let's say that anything involving Jarvis Cocker interests me. Besides, the movie was receiving quite a lot praise, being saluted as somewhat innovative and exciting. Unfortunately, it doesn't fulfill the expectations.

For starters, Florian Habricht's documentary is not that shocking. It's an insight take on a final concert, in this case the last (hope we are wrong) Pulp gig after their most celebrated comeback. With the addition the show takes place at home, at Sheffield. While he approaches the band while they prepare for the show... and to say goodbye to play as one of the fundamental pop bands of the last twenty years, the director tries to dissect what means Pulp, and their music to their fans (some of them, quite quite hardcore fans), their hometown and it's common people.

I know, I know. That doesn't sound bad at all. And, despite its originality is dubious, it is fair to say that's not your average music documentary. And I agree some of the inhabitants of Sheffield interviewed are really genuine and/or deadly funny (freaks, venerable old women with a knack for humour, sensitive and fragile human beings). And they like to sing (the musical scenes where they singalong the band tunes are charming) But it's hard to see the supposed sociological depth or even the testament to a city and HIS band in an amount of jokes for hipsters (the one with the kids is particularly annoying). Entertaining? For sure. Enlightening? Ummm...

So, what we got instead? Several Jarvis Cocker' witty comments, in particular the ones looking/hiding from the camera while he talks about the pass of time and on the subject of fame ("it didn't agree with me – like a nut allergy" he sentences). Jarvis Cocker in diverse and kind-of-cool situations, the best one involving his concert wardrobe and aid kit, which is priceless. Few revelations from the rest of band members, including the über cool Richard Hawley. And a mind-blowing, absolutely fantastic concert footage. Is that enough? Well, thanks to Jarvis charisma and the great tunes, it is. But the best film of the Festival? Or the movie Pulp deserves? It just fails short for that...

SCORE: 6,5/10

4 comments:

  1. Shit review, i LOVE THIS FILM seen it twice! and it won the audience favourite prize.

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    1. Maybe I'm too much of a Pulp fan, or maybe my expectations were too high, but I just thought this band deserves more. Have you seen "The Beat is the Law"? Again far from perfect, but together, they probably offer a better picture of Pulp, imo...

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  2. The Beat is the Law is a very traditional television style doco. Yes, very informative! This is cleerly very different class of film :)

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    1. "Different class" of film :D great choice of words....

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