Florida Film Fest review: BIG STAR: NOTHING CAN HURT ME
BIG STAR: NOTHING CAN HURT ME
This necessary documentary tells a story through the speckled old photographs of “a reluctant rock band with an ironic name.” Most of the joy in Big Star: Nothing Can Hurt Me comes from nostalgic critics who helped Big Star to become a band known for their devotion to creating new sounds that put to shame today’s lazier laptop musicians. The film’s narrative is treated like a child torn between divorced parents – its time is divided between influential lead singer Alex Chilton and founding member Chris Bell, who left Big Star after the release of their first album. Chilton offers the film a quirky energy and allows it to focus on a wider selection of releases (and footage from the Cramps!), but it’s Bell’s comeback at the end of the film that will make you want to drive straight home and attentively listen to “You and Your Sister” on repeat.
The gear close-ups alone (especially of the Mellotron) will make the film worthwhile viewing for music nerds, but be prepared to die from envy when you hear about the access Big Star had to Memphis’ legendary Ardent Studios, which made their sonic adventuring possible. Plus, the Memphis footage is undeniably exciting to relive, especially the legitimate partying at T.G.I. Friday’s. Although the film is slow at times (often showing us the same photographs over and over), Chilton’s charm and his love-it-or-leave-it sound evolution make it a must-see for those impressed by sonic devoutness.