NO DIRECTION HOME: BOB DYLAN
Director: Martin Scorsese
The film: This 31/2-hour documentary will be screened on August 6, 13 and 15 as part of the Hong Kong International Film Festival's Summer Pop programme, a mini festival for young moviegoers.
The film is comprised of interviews with people close to the legendary singer-songwriter as well as extensive footage of his creative life. The documentary charts his tumultuous journey from his early days in Greenwich Village coffee houses, when he pioneered the New Folk movement, to global stardom in 1966.
The film is, in the words of critic Roger Ebert, 'a portrait that is deep, sympathetic, perceptive and yet finally leaves Dylan shrouded in mystery, which is where he properly lives.'
Dylan's classic songs: Born in 1941 in Minnesota, the singer-cum-poet is best known for classics Blowin' In the Wind and The Times They Are A-Changin' - both anthems of the civil rights and anti-war movements at the time.
The director: Scorsese is at his best when portraying complex characters leading tortured lives, such as the gangsters in Goodfellas and Casino, the fallen boxing hero in Raging Bull, the psychopath in the remake of Cape Fear and the repressed lovers in The Age of Innocence. Dylan therefore makes an ideal subject. He was known as 'the voice of a generation' in the 1960s, a time when hopes for peace were high and the reality of war brutal.
In the vault: Dylan also features in The Last Waltz (1978), another music documentary directed by Scorsese. The film uses the final concert of a group of musicians that often played with Dylan, called The Band, as the backbone of the film.
Scorsese punctuates the concert with revealing interviews with the band members - guitarist Robbie Robertson, bassist and vocalist Rick Danko, drummer Levon Helm, organist Garth Hudson and keyboard player Richard Manuel.
Dylan and other household names of pop and rock music, such as Eric Clapton (whose guitar duet with Robertson was the highlight of the concert), delivered electrifying performances. Other guests included Joni Mitchell, Neil Diamond, Ringo Starr, Neil Young and Muddy Waters. Dylan ended the concert with his classic, I Shall Be Released.
Thanks to Scorsese's clever camerawork and editing, the film is known as one of the best rock movies ever made.
Visit www.hkiff.org.hk for more information about the Summer Pop programme.