john’s review published on Letterboxd:
American Utopia displays two brilliant artists collaborating with one another and making something unlike anything I have ever seen. As a big fan of Talking Heads and David Byrne, my expectations were high but not too high. This is because my biggest fear going in was if this would be a retreat or a copycat of Jonathan Demme's masterpiece "Stop Making Sense" and I am very happy to say this is not. While "Stop Making Sense" feels like Byrne displaying his talent through music, this film feels more personal to him. Every song choice is not only a fun time but also has a bit of relevancy to our modern culture without trying to be preachy or on the nose, while also displaying who he is as a person. Every movement Byrne performs is at times comedic but also awe-inspiring. He truly is one of the most inspiration artists this world has given us, and we should not take that for granted! This film is something I needed right now. As a freshman in college, I am trying to navigate a new area I am not familiar with, while combining with the anxieties of trying to meet new people and earn solid grades in my classes. This film not only displaying my fears for college life but exhibiting the anxieties going on in my own life and is something I never knew I needed. Like Jonathan Demme's masterpiece, this is a super fun time! You cannot watch this movie and not dance or just sing along with the rest of the crew. Lee's perfect direction captures the mannerisms and nuances of an artist at his most free and liberating. There is so much care and other thought provoking themes are being addressed here. The more I think about this film, the more it is becoming my favorite of 2020!
Please see this!