Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis looks at this musician’s life through the eyes of The Colonel’s (Tom Hanks) and we have to wonder if this man had any compassion at all.
Biopics about musicians are often sanitised for the big screen. Bohemian Rhapsody (review link) was more about Freddie Mercury, more than the band from a third-person perspective. Conversely, Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis looks at this musician’s life through the eyes of The Colonel’s (Tom Hanks). It sometimes vilifies rather than objectifies his role in making this man a star.
Even this villain who managed this singer (Austin Butler) throughout the decades admits to his problem. We get little sympathy for the devil.
Anyone who followed Elvis’ career or was part of his inner circle knew Colonel Tom Parker was trouble. Even though he helped turn the teen from Tupelo, Mississippi into a superstar, the stuff he held back on (or didn’t allow him to partake) may have dimmed this superstar’s light by a little. The spotlight is back because of the award-winning performances between Hanks and Butler. The film is really about their relationship first and the music second. Any tidbits of actual history are marginalised. This performer was upset because he wasn’t given the respect he so deserved during his time in Hollywood.
this documentary is highly entertaining, toe-tapping and a wonderful look when the industry was not as dog eat dog. Quebec is its own microcosm.
By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)
Streaming Online at the Victoria Film Festival Get your pass here to view beginning Feb 5th, 2021
Note: Available to view for residents in British Columbia
C’mon baby, let’s do the twist with Denis Pantis, the son of a Greek immigrant who took Montreal’s music scene by storm back in the 60s. His presence was everywhere. From producing to finding new talent, the names he discovered said something not only for the times but also for his pocketbook.
Jukebox: An American Dream Made in Quebec is a wicked look into the past, with a personality in its presentation to boot. Directors Éric Ruel and Guylaine Maroist expertly delves into Pantis’ influence throughout his many ventures, and although he never wanted to be a musician himself, he had the talent to promote others and turn hits from elsewhere into francophone delights.