Stop Making Sense

Stop Making Sense ★★★★½

Jonathan Demme Ranked

I don’t know why I always try to binge watch three directors at once, it’s just what I do. I was midway through Ingmar Bergman, than I wandered off to Gus Van Sant, now I’m breezing through Jonathan Demme’s 80s run. Something Wild was a really cool romcom/thriller flick, and this concert film right here was awesome. I didn’t know anything about Talking Heads, they’ve been on my list of bands to check out but never felt the need to. Demme’s love for the music, not just their music but the art of music is on full display here. His famous closeups are all over the place, he knows when to cut and when to add a wide shot, he always keep the show interesting to watch, my god this is filmmaker porn.
David Byrne is a character. He just screams “I’m the normally awkward guy who wants to light the dance floor up, but like in a cool way not Napoleon Dynamite.” The band’s joy is infectious. You can’t help but groove along, even if they’re not your thing.
I started by watching this as a film student would, studying the shots and editing and all that nerd shit. By the end, I was just enjoying the music, which was the whole purpose of this documentary. Demme made sure to put on a show, but he never tried to overshadow the band’s performance, instead he enhanced it.

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