Stop Making Sense

Stop Making Sense ★★★★★

Is it possible to fully articulate an experience as resplendent as watching music come to life? In Jonathan Demme’s collaboration with Talking Heads, Stop Making Sense, that euphoric creation is even more singular—with David Byrne building a sonic house stone-by-stone and song-by-song that the band subsequently burns down with frenzied, harmonic jubilation. 

Talking Heads is my favorite band, so finally seeing this instrumental masterwork transported me to seeing David Byrne perform live on his American Utopia tour last year, but filled me with a longing for the nostalgia someone with more life experience might have seeing Talking Heads in their glory like on the nights of these amazing concerts. The music is undeniably funky and raucous and alive, so multi-layered and advanced without being pretentious—a true catalyst for fun.

There’s a trunk-load of magic to explore in this film, from David Byrne’s amazing physicality and infinite energy to the continually-added setpieces and musicians. Byrne’s pillowed hip padding and comically oversized suit are the most iconic of the myriad of theatrics, but seeing the band so intimately was truly cinematic—I loved vocalists Lynn Mabry and Ednah Holt’s electric pink and blue eyeshadow and coordinating outfits/hairstyles, Tina Weymouth’s mysterious tarp-like jumpsuit and her costume change and adorable persona during Tom-Tom Club’s interlude, and David Byrne’s Patrick Bateman-inspired look during “Making Flippy Floppy”. Everyone was wearing themselves out having an epic time, and so was I! Please watch this ASAP and love it and treasure it and steal your brother-in-law’s DVD copy and never give it back.

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