Flicks for Miles in mini-Jazz film festival
A FILM festival of Jazz features and documentaries with one common link, Miles Davis, will be held in Brunswick Heads next weekend.
Whether integral to the story, or a passing comet skimming it's atmosphere, Davis figures in some way in each of these films.
The films are:
Miles Ahead (Friday, November 23, 8pm)
Rated MA, Director: Don Cheadle. Stars: Don Cheadle, Emayatzy Corinealdi, Ewan McGregor.
Don Cheadle's biopic about Miles Davis brings a syncopated view on the legendary musician and trumpet player's life as it scats around his turbulent life.
Chasing Trane (Friday, November 23, 6pm)
Director: John Scheinfeld. Stars: Reggie Workman, Ravi Coltrane, Sonny Rollins, Antonia Andrews, Lewis Porter, Bill Clinton, Denzel Washington.
Written and directed by critically-acclaimed documentary film-maker John Scheinfeld, This film was produced with the full participation of the Coltrane family and the support of the record labels that collectively own the Coltrane catalogue.
Director John Scheinfeld brings his strong story-telling skills to create a rich, textured and compelling narrative that takes the audience to unexpected places.
Dingo (Saturday, November 24, 4pm)
Rated M. Director: Rolf der Heer. Stars: Miles Davis, Colin Friels, Helen Buday.
On a hot day in Poona Flat, Western Australia, in 1969, legendary American jazz trumpeter Billy Cross (Miles Davis) plays an impromptu concert on the tarmac after his plane makes an unscheduled stop. John Anderson (Daniel Scott), aged nine, decides on the spot to become a trumpet player.
Twenty years later, John (Colin Friels) has developed a unique style based on the sounds of the Australian bush, particularly the dingo, but he's still in Poona Flat. He makes a living as a dogger (a man who traps and shoots dingoes) and dreams of going to Paris to play with Billy Cross.
He has kept in touch with his idol, sending letters and tapes of his music. Approaching his 30th birthday, and without telling his wife Jane (Helen Buday), Anderson flies to Paris. He wants to know if he's good enough.
Billy Cross is now an ailing recluse, but he and his French wife (Bernadette Lafont) take him in. John makes his solo debut at a famous club and Billy comes out of retirement to join him on stage. John returns to Poona Flat, in time for his 'surprise' birthday party.
Dingo is an extremely eccentric illustration of a perennial movie theme: that one must follow one's dreams.
Clive Davis The Soundtrack Of Our Lives (Saturday, November 24, 2pm)
Year: 2017 | Director: Chris Perkel | Cast: Paul Simon, Art Garfunkel, Carlos Santana, Bruce Springsteen, Berry Gordi, Rod Stewart, Patti Smith, Tony Bennett.
Based on the 2013 book The Soundtrack of My Life, written by Clive Davis and Anthony DeCurtis, the film tells the story of an unlikely force in the entertainment industry: a man who had no musical talent but was gifted at finding superstars, the legendary Clive Davis. From Miles Davis to Janis Joplin, from The Notorious B.I.G. to Whitney Houston, if you love music, you will love this documentary.
In many ways, The Soundtrack of Our Lives isn't about Clive Davis, but the lack of exploration of Clive's personal life isn't a let down; the film is truly about the music.
Betty: They Say I'm Different (Sunday, November 25, 3pm)
Year: 2018 | Director: Phil Cox | Cast: Mike Canton, Oliver Wang, Al Gee, Greg Errico, Miles Davis, Tamar Kali, Betty Davis.
An intimate portrayal of Betty Davis, a cult figure in popular music whose incredibly rich life story will allow the viewer to address issues of race, gender, fame, and the role of liberated women in American society.
This is project is by director Phil Cox who has written this creative documentary after four years of conversing and spending time with Davis.
Bill Evans Time Remembered (Sunday, November 25, 1pm)
Year: 2015 | Director: Bruce Spielgel | Cast: Connie Atkinson, Tony Bennett, Bill Charlap, Jack De Johnette, Jon Hendricks, Marty Morell.
Eight years in the making, Bruce Spiegel's touching documentary on the life and music of the late, great, and mysterious pianist is a must-see for jazz history buffs, as well as for anyone who enjoys cool, impressionistic piano-the style Bill Evans pioneered beginning in the early 1950's and owned and expanded up to his death in 1980 at the age of 51. The categories are broad enough to include scores of listeners.
- At Brunswick Picture House, 30 Fingal St, Brunswick Heads. November 23 to 25. Visit brunswickpicturehouse.com for details.