|Message to Love: The Isle of Wight Festival - The Movie (DVD, 1997)|
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Allentown, PA, USA
|Zz/Various Artists - Message To Love: Isle Of Wight (1997) - Used - Digital|
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|Genre:||Musical & Performing Arts|
Average review score based on 11 user reviews
Unlike other 60s music films this one thankfully lacks any "groovy" stylistic techniques, which gives it a more timeless feel. It's a fairly straightforward documentary of a massive festival on a Woodstock scale -- the likes of which were unfamiliar to Great Britain.
It's detriment, yet perhaps saving grace, is the back-story of the festival's promoters & their battle to get their patrons to pay, and the inevitable storming of the gates.
The musical acts include some heavy hitters and some odd choices: The Who, Free, Taste, Tiny Tim, John Sebastian, Donovan, Ten Years After, The Moody Blues, Kris Kristofferson, Joni Mitchell, Miles Davis, Leonard Cohen, ELP, Joan Baez, Jethro Tull, The Doors, and more.
The fact that this was the Doors last performance, and that Jimi Hendrix was dead 18 days later, enhances the film's "end of an era" tone.
As one of the ants inside the gates (I paid) and on the hillside, it's nice to finally have an omnipotent view of the festival.
Double-sided disc, 2 hours.
Though following 2 consecutive successful festivals on the island, in 1968 and 1969 (the latter one featuring Bob Dylan and The Band), no one could predict what would happen by late August 1970 on a small island only a few miles off the south coast of Britian - the sheer huge scale of this mammoth event, which was the biggest turmoil in terms of rock music, and the counterculture. By late 1970, a new world has emerged, built on the ruins of the hippie ideal of the 1960's. Director Murry Lerner (who also been the director of "Festival" - the Newport 1963-1964-1965 Folk Festivals) was there and did a fine job, capturing the chaotic events and sheer madness surrounding perhaps the most controversial rock festival ever put together. Lerner focused, and rightly so, on the macro rather than the micro, to bring the fullest, most comprehensive and balanced picture to the audience. Editing such a huge scale multy day event with literally hundreds of hours of raw footage to search through, is a tricky business which can be resulted in several outcomes and cannot, ever, satisfy the entire audience out there. Indeed, some heavy musical editing work (the least favorable outcome by any means) spoils the sheer enjoyment of some of the world's biggest rock acts ever converged together, a fact that highlights the low point of the film -- Not enough music -- Never the less, a real colorful time capsule treat is shared in vivid colors, sounds and sights of the hippie culture, seconds before it was forever imploding into a purple, gloomy haze. and with Hendrix, The Who, The Doors, Ten Years After, Jethro Tull, plus a mile long of superstars line up on hand, Message to Love can't be that bad and still worth a few dollars and 2+ hours of any real 60's-70's alternative life style music fan's precious time. Verdict: Highly recommended. A+
Another reviewer of this dvd got it right when they said that the editing left too little live performance by the musicians and too much jumping around to the other things that were happening at the same time during the festival. I agree that it would be a good idea for fans of any particular band or musician who played at this festival to look for a dvd of that band to get a more complete performance showing. (There are very good dvds of the performances of several of the bands that were at the Isle of Wight festival,including Jethro Tull and the Who.)The limited performance footage in this dvd is very good,but there simply isn't enough of it.It is hard to get a feel for how the festival actually was,although it is very evident that due to promoter inexperience(and fan resistance to paying for the music that they were hearing and seeing),the whole thing was a financial disaster. The short clips of Jimi Hendrix playing at what turned out to be his last live performance might make this dvd worth owning,but the attempt to put a four-day festival into a two-hour package really doesn't work very well.
Not a great piece of rockumentary, yet certainly historic. This is the last big music festival of the 60's, and rightfully so. The film shows what a mess the producers/promoters made of this event, while making a mess of the film also. The clips of some performers (e.g. Miles Davis) are sometimes very short and the incompetence of the managers too long. I bought it cheap on ebay because it contains the last public performance of Jimi Hendrix. If you get it for less than $10 it's probably worth it. Better yet, the festival is going on again this summer and should be well worth the trip.
i have been noticing that several bands are putting out their own dvds of their performances at the isle of wight.and with good reason.this multi-day music festival is one of only a handful of these events that rise to a level that can only be called historacle.this dvd only catches this in parts.so much is left out because of time restrictions that a person can feel let down.especially if you have favorite bands whose performances you wished to see.every band here that is in or near the supergroup catagory has had their performances cut down to fit the needs of putting it on one watchable dvd.i am glad i bought it,because of its place in history.but i recomend searching out your own favorite bands to see if they have released their own performances.then i am sure you would enjoy it much more.a release of the whole concert with no performances cut would be the only way to do justice to such of an event.