This applies equally to artistes as well as Events. The Event flicks want you to feel bad because you weren't there, you poor sad sucker, even when the event was Altamont (see Gimme Shelter) and what you missed was being beaten up and murdered by Hell's Angels. But then the Event films don't realise that they're locked up in a larger contradiction: they also want you to experience the excitement of the live and spontaneous, only there's all this cumbersome technology in the way. Everything's at a remove, including the performer's energy. There's no way to put the genie in the bottle without bottling the genie.
Which doesn't stop artistes from trying to distil their own immortal essence. No matter the attempts, the results are always the same (ah] stardom). Q: What's the difference between Dylan's Renaldo and Clare and Truth or Dare: In Bed with Madonna? A: None. Both feature faked backstage footage, close-ups of iconic faces contorted in creative agony (Joe Cocker, above) and the spectacle of showbiz egos gloriously out of control. Which does make them documentaries, if not in the manner intended.
(Photograph omitted)Reuse content