Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Film Review: In Your Dreams Stevie Nicks + Submit Your Questions For Stevie Flicknation Interview

In Your Dreams: Stevie Nicks Film Review
The Hollywood Reporter
by John DeFore

Stevie Nicks and producer Dave Stewart co-direct a diary about the album they made together.

THE HAMPTONS, NEW YORK — A diaristic doc whose appeal is limited strictly to megafans, In Your Dreams: Stevie Nicks chronicles the collaboration between Nicks and Eurythmics member Dave Stewart on the 2011 album of the same name. A raucous premiere here (with viewers applauding after every song) suggests Nicks has enough admirers to fill special screenings here and there, but the film is best suited to a CD/DVD Collectors' Edition package.

Nicks and Stewart share directing credit on the film, displaying an enthusiasm for effects -- from filters to fisheye lenses -- that sometimes exacerbates the choppiness of Shane Mclafferty's editing. Their stylistic flourishes fit more smoothly in the music video-like sequences scattered throughout, where 19th-century costumes and the occasional vampire or magician matches the music's mood.

The film opens "somewhere in Southern California," where Nicks has decided to set up mikes in the middle of her sprawling old house and spend the better part of a year piecing a record together with Stewart and some other old friends. Having handed Stewart a book full of writings (she uses the word "poems" pretty loosely), the two collaborate on making songs from them; the film gives each track its own bit of screen time, whether it was inspired by a long-ago post-rehab romance ("For What It's Worth") or is little more than an aural book report about "Wide Sargasso Sea."

This may suit devotees, but more casual fans will wish for a movie that doesn't assume we already know everything there is to know about the singer's career. Only one brief tangent on her childhood makes its way onscreen, and there's almost no talk of her early solo outings or her heyday with Fleetwood Mac. (An enjoyable bit of keyboard noodling on "Dreams" is as close as we get to the glory days.) Old bandmates Mick Fleetwood and Lindsey Buckingham do drop by to record on new songs, though, and we are treated to a funny story about the time Nicks tried to steal a Mike Campbell tune that became Tom Petty's "Runaway Trains."
Though unconvinced viewers may snort when Nicks compares herself to Bob Dylan or treats lyrics scribbled on hotel stationery like relics of great import, we do see things partly explaining her success: Knowing she's not getting what she wants during a track's playback, she proves to have remembered one of Stewart's guitar solos better than he himself does.

Production Company: Weapons of Mass Entertainment
Directors-Executive Producers: Dave Stewart, Stevie Nicks
Producers: Dave Stewart, Paul Boyd
Director of photography: Paul Boyd
Editor: Shane Mclafferty
Sales: John Beug
No rating, 100 minutes

On 'IN YOUR DREAMS' Documentary

Sound Waves TV on the west coast will be interviewing Stevie tomorrow (Oct 10) about the new documentary and are asking fans "what's on your mind"... Ask Stevie a question.

Think about it.. Check out what others have put forth and submit your question on the Sound Waves TV Facebook page

It will soon be available on their Flick Nation radio show. 

(Weekly 1-hour talk show; hosted by Willis, and featuring Steve Wagner, Kevin Tripp and "Man in Hollywood" Steven Kirk). It's wall-to-wall insider news, rumors, deals, reviews and attitude! Available on Stitcher Smart Radio, iTunes, kgoradio.com, and flicknation.net.   Flicknation on Facebook


Tony said...

The same reviewer would dismiss GWTW because it didn't cover Scarlett's childhood or her life that lead to what we see in the actual movie?
When reviews criticize the movie or whatever art form they are judging, for what it's not-- they lose me. This is not an autobiographical doc on her whole life...I would love that too....but I intend to see this and enjoy it for what it is-- a year in the life of Stevie, a year she made a critically acclaimed cd, a year she says was the best of her life.

Anonymous said...

A message to John DeFore:

Stevie has explained frequently over the course of the past year, before this film was even edited, that it would ultimately be a detailed chronology of the writing of each individual song on the album "In Your Dreams". And that is exactly what it turned out to be. It seems to me John, that you never took the time to read any of those interviews in which Stevie explained what the movie would be about. Your negative bias is evident from the first paragraph of your review. YES, this film is ABSOLUTELY intended for the hard core fan rather than casual listener of Stevie music. That's a GOOD thing, not a BAD thing, as you insinuate.

"Journalists" like you need to throughly research movies before reviewing them, particularly at film festivals where 90 percent of the films are independent productions created specifically FOR core audiences. Were you expecting to see an episode of "Behind The Music" or other generic network documentary? It sure sounds like that to me. There are dozens of Fleetwood Mac docs already existing. This one broke that mold.

It's fine if you personally did not care for the particular look or editing of this film, but you seem to be oblivious to the fact that the value of this film lies in the fact that it is the first truly candid footage anybody in the general public has ever seen of Stevie Nicks in 30 years, since the backstage film footage shot during the Rumors and Tusk Tours.

Anonymous said...

I'm tempted to do a little dance, spin around three times, then annoint my head with V-8 juice.

Anonymous said...

To be fair, I am about as hardcore a Stevie fan as they come. That being said, as much as I loved this film, it is definitely flawed and suffers from lacking a compelling emotional climax. Although it was lovely to see each IYD track addressed, I didn't think it was necessary. I would have rather seen this as the story of a woman, in the twilight of her career, who has experienced a creative renaissance long after dismissing the notion of creating anything new ever again vs. a simple chronology of events. There is little here that non-fans would find captivating.

Anonymous said...

The Hollywood Reporter is one of the oldest, most respected media-trade outlets in the world. They know their stuff. While I love Stevie and will surely buy a DVD of this doc, I believe this critic's claim its appeal is limited to hardcore fans. That's just fine with me. Please don't shoot the messenger. He's not doing a disservice to Stevie - he's just doing his job.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous has a firm grasp on what movies are ideally supposed to strive for. Not having seen the film, does it have a beginning, middle and an end or does it just play "flat?"

Had IYD garnered a Grammy win, it would've made for a great ending to the story.

I just assumed the project was meant for fans, but when you enter it into a film festival, you obviously open yourself to review/criticism.

Perhaps the CD/DVD package was the way to go.

Anonymous said...

^^ I agree, and I think we need to hold our horses before beheading John DeFore. He's just doing his job and hollywood (as in, the film business) is not a forgiving place.

I loved the film, but I will love anything Stevie puts out. I'd love if they released IYD as a 4-hour doc. But just because a film is meant to be about the making of an album doesn't prohibit a reviewer, or anybody, from suggesting it would have been better if taken in another direction, or certain elements were added.

His last paragraph about Dylan/hotel paper lyrics was snarky though.

Anonymous said...

I wrote the post above in response to the post starting with "To be fair" (hence the ^^) but I agree with the two posts inbetween too.

Yeah, the movie is a bit flat overall--maybe due to covering EVERY song.

I will say, the opening was far better than I expected...but then we fell into much of the same style/pacing from song to song. Stevie was funny throughout. SA and New Orleans were longer segments.

And as far as the ending, it really centered around a nice admission from Stevie that I don't want to spoil for people. It was a nice ending. A grammy win, etc, would have completely punctuated the whole thing.

Post a Comment