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The Velvet Underground

This documentary by Todd Haynes explores the rise of the Velvet Underground, primarily through the band’s connection to Andy Warhol’s factory. The merge of music and the visual aesthetic that Warhol brought made the Velvet Underground famous. What works in this film, and makes it a great one, is that it doesn’t just examine the band with the standard interviews. There are interviews, but Haynes juxtaposes hundreds of images and video and concert segments together to create a 360-degree view into the 1960’s artistic and cultural experience from the New York perspective. I have always loved this period, and I have not seen the story told in this way. Whether you liked or didn’t like The Velvet Underground (Lou Reed and John Cale were its most well–known members), the story of the New York City artistic scene should not be missed. One thing that fascinated me was the stark difference between the New York and LA music scenes made clear in this film. I loved this and is one of my favorite music documentaries; Todd Haynes created a masterpiece. (2021; 5 Stars)

About Gary Burkholder

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