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UKScreen Rating:

Awesome; I F*ckin Shot That! – Review

WHAT’S IT ABOUT?

On the 9th of October 2004, there was a Beastie Boys concert at Madison Square Garden in New York.
The band decided to record the gig in a rather unusual way – an authorised bootleg, if you like — they gave video cameras to fifty fans, scattered them throughout the audience and let them film what they liked.
The band then sat down with hours of footage – and this is the result.

WHAT’S IT LIKE?

There’s a reason why Hi8 cameras aren’t usually used for professional film-making – because they quality is

. The blurred nature of much of the footage, as well as the unprofessionally shaky camerawork, on top of the bullet-speed editing makes for a very disorientating watch.
A few camera angles – notably the ones closest to the stage – do appear to be clearer – I guess those in prime positions were given better cameras, but it’s still not great.
It’s really not one of the cinema, this. I have no doubt that it’ll do good business on DVD, particularly among Beastie Boys fans, who’ll put it on at home as background entertainment.
But I can’t imagine it appealing to anyone else – not least because some of the band’s best known hits (“Fight for your Right to Party” and “No Sleep Til Brooklyn “) don’t feature at all, and given the real-time nature of the whole thing, there’s very little of the off-stage fun and frolics you’d expect from such a film. You get almost no sense of the band members’ personalities – they hardly even talk between songs.
For non-fans, perhaps the most enjoyable – and certainly the most surprising – bits are the blues instrumental interlude, mid-way through and a rockier set towards the end, all of which kind of makes you wish they’d play instruments – and by extension, music – more often.
There are a couple of “blink-and-you’ll-miss-them” moments of relief from the gig, when one cameraman takes his camcorder to the gents, and another catches none-other than Ben Stiller in the audience.
As a piece of cinema, with no attempt at any kind of “story” and little attempt to draw in viewers, it’s nothing like enough to attract anyone but the hardiest BB fans.
You don’t reckon the theatrical release is purely a ruse to boost the imminent DVD sales, by any chance, do you?
And in case you’re wondering…the title is what the fifty fans are meant to say to their grandchildren, when they sit them down to watch the film in years to come.

opens in selected cinemas nationwide 7th July 2006

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