Picks from the flicks
Bob Cilman, Stan Goldman, Dora Morrow, Len Fontaine, Bob Salvini, Joe Benoit, Fred Knittle
Stephen Walker A documentary about an old people’s choir banging out tunes between visits to the specialist doesn’t really sound like much of a film, but what an unexpected gem it is. I laughed. I cried. I sang along. The film really is a roller coaster journey, from the humorous and light-hearted first stanza – full of irony and frivolity as we hear quirky renditions of punk, indie and R ’n’ B classics, such as the 92-year-old war bride Eileen hammering out her version of the Clash’s Should I Stay or Should I Go? – to the depths of despair as two of the choir members die in the weeks before the penultimate performance. Throughout the course of the film we are introduced to the characters who make up the choir, and it is the tapestry of their individual stories combined that give such strength and depth to the story of the choir itself. The limitations of old age, the perceptions of elderly people, the frailty of life – all take on new meaning when set to the film’s classic tracks. Never has Bowie’s Golden Years taken on such depth of meaning – nor indeed Sonic Youth’s seminal Schizophrenia. With each line, with each back story, with each close up on the lined faces of their geriatric renderers, a new sense of significance sprang forth. Not in an earnest way, but with joy, with soul and with characters that make you want to get up and shake what your mumma gave ya – while you still can!
Paranormal Activity 2