The Netflix Report

Movie reviews from my Netflix queue. Highly personal and opinionated!

Try Netflix for Free!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Sing Faster: The Stagehands' Ring Cycle

Yes, I do enjoy opera. Yes, I have performed in and worked tech on many stage productions of plays and musicals. No, I did not enjoy this documentary.

Filmed as a PBS 1-hour special (with no extras on the disc other than "About the filmmakers"), this is essentially an amateur home movie showing random snippets of the backstage world. It's somewhat interesting if you've been involved in theater backstage, as you can spot familiar situations and reactions and get a self-satisfied fond memory. But the documentary has no continuity, no point of view, and no story to tell.

It honestly is nothing more than a collage of random sound bites over headsets and shots of stagehands and actors/singers getting ready for their show. You get no sense of time, no understanding of what operations are critical and what aren't, no dramatic sense of what cursing is throwaway and what signals real problems, and often no sense of how difficulties are overcome.

Those unfamiliar with The Ring Cycle won't gain too much from the garbled attempts by the crew to explain the plot to each other, although it is mildly amusing to afficionados. I felt that the prime purpose of a documentary was lost here... you neither learn something new, nor come away with your perceptions altered about a subject.

This is really just "slice of life" filmmaking, edited by turning the camera on and off and seeing what shows up in front of the lens. A disappointment.

Parents: Nothing to alarm the kinder here. But they won't be interested.


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home