New Blues Movie Out Today
Fri Nov 5 09:52:45 EST 2004
LIGHTNING IN A BOTTLE opens today check local listings for theaters and
By CHRIS VOGNAR / The Dallas Morning News
Lightning in a Bottle is a happy affair, even though it's dedicated to the
most mournful of pop forms. It's a time capsule record of a blues
celebration, held Feb. 7, 2003, at Manhattan's famed Radio City Music Hall.
Directed by Antoine Fuqua (Training Day), Lightning uses one-of-a-kind
performances and dexterous camera work to knock some dust off the tired
concert film formula.
Mr. Fuqua takes us backstage and back in time to highlight the individuals
who helped create what we know as the blues. Muddy Waters, Lightnin' Hopkins
and John Lee Hooker are among those receiving posthumous props. But the real
magic is up on the stage.
That's where you'll find Solomon Burke, the self-proclaimed "king of rock
and soul," breathing fire into "Down in the Valley" and "Turn on Your Love
Light." Natalie Cole does a startlingly brassy rendition of "St. Louis
Blues." Octogenarian wonder David "Honeyboy" Edwards gets down and dirty
with "Gamblin' Man." The Neville Brothers work their Bayou groove with "Big
Chief." The list goes on and on and on.
Not everything works. Chuck D. has no business turning John Lee Hooker's
"Boom Boom" into an anti-war thrash song. But Lightning in a Bottle is an
aptly named blast from the past that manages to sizzle in the present.
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