AppsScraps Movie Reviews

Jul 13, 2010

Taking Woodstock

Release date: 16 May 2009 (Cannes Film Festival)

Ang Lee directs his take on the behind-the-scenes story of the family that made Woodstock happen - the Tibers. Centre stage is Elliot Tiber (Demetri Martin), the gay son of Jake and Sonia who returns from his career in New York City to offer the Woodstock organizers his town, tiny Bethel, NY, as ground zero for the hippie invasion. While you never see the concert, you do hear it, and there are shots reminiscent of Michael Wadleigh's classic 1970 film, Woodstock. Sadly amid all the noise there are but two standout performances - kudos to Imelda Staunton who works wonders as Elliot's over-the-top-Jewish-mother-from-hell, Sonia; and Liev Schreiber as Elliot's ex-marine transvestite chief of security, Vilma. Highbrow reviewers will claim anyone not liking this film 'didn't get it'. Wrong; Ang Lee needs to try a toke or three on some weed and to learn to be less crafted in his film-making. Taking Woodstock is an exceptionally well made film, yes, but it completely lacks any vibe or heart and is about as groovy as watching paint dry. A depressingly slow and exceedingly boring 'tribute' to Woodstock, this soulless venture will make you glad you missed the concert. Avoid.

My rating 2 out of 10.

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