a kaleidoscopic odyssey by way of David Bowie’s brilliance

How a lot David Bowie is it potential to pack into one characteristic documentary? Or how a lot David Bowie-ness, let’s say? Moonage Daydream, a wildly inventive tribute to every part Bowie achieved over 4 and a half a long time, units a sky-high bar as cinematic fan-service, and it leaves you buzzing. 

Brett Morgen’s movie, which simply world-premiered in a Cannes midnight slot, sparks up with sufficient concepts and juxtapositions, thrilling excerpts of dwell efficiency, and easily, a lot Bowie, it’s an expertise to greedily inhale in a packed cinema. Bowie’s longstanding producer Tony Visconti (who has remastered the songs for encompass sound) deserves nothing much less – if I ever catch anybody watching it by way of tinny earbuds on a laptop computer, quite than seizing the possibility to let it loudly electrify them on the most important display screen potential, there can be hell to pay. 

Morgen is well-known on the documentary scene – he co-directed the Robert Evans insider memoir The Kid Stays within the Picture (2002), and received Emmys for each Jane (2017) (concerning the anthropologist Jane Goodall) and Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck (2015). The latter movie was hailed because the definitive Cobain doc, and went a way, with its animated interludes and beforehand unreleased home-video footage, in direction of the kaleidoscopic collage Morgen now lands upon.

Morgen sat down with interview topics for Cobain, although, and it’s the elimination of these altogether right here that loosens the ultimate strictures, formally talking. Instead, it manages to free-associate, rock out, let Bowie appear answerable for the narrative, and to hint the intervals of his profession with a crisp sense of chronology that by no means dawdles. These are fairly spectacular feats for a music doc to juggle, whereas additionally zipping by way of at velocity and feeling method, method shorter than 140 minutes. Disciples might genuinely watch this factor all day.

Bowie’s archive was opened up wholesale to Morgen, and there’s not solely a wealth of important dwell performances included – together with long-lost footage from his 1978 Isolar II tour gig at Earl’s Court – however all of the hoopla round them, hyped followers in cosplay setting the scene earlier than his concert events all around the world. Scan the faces within the queue outdoors one of many early London reveals, and there’s a younger Mick Jagger lurking, throughout a giddy opening salvo, set to “Hello Spaceboy”, which works like gangbusters to get you within the temper. 

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