Stop Making Sense
Directed by Jonathan Demme. US. 1984. NR. 88 minutes. Palm Pictures. Digital.
Sponsored by Electric Avenue Music
Fri., April 15, 2016
From the moment Talking Heads’ brain trust, David Byrne, takes the stage brandishing a boom box and proclaiming “I’ve got a tape I want to play,” you know that “Stop Making Sense” is not going to be the average concert film. That’s because Talking Heads were never an average band. At the vanguard of the late 70s New Wave, Talking Heads were always just a little smarter, a little more musically daring and lot more fun than many of their peers. Plus, their videos were among the first to elevate the visuals beyond the lip-synced band performance format. Director Jonathan Demme (“Silence of the Lambs,” “Philadelphia”) was well aware of all of these facts and he wisely keeps the camera primarily focused on this amazing band and doesn’t concern himself with audience reaction shots. We, the movie-goers, are now the real audience and he wants to give each one of us a front row seat for this dynamic performance. Captured at the zenith of their career, touring in support of their “Speaking In Tongues” album, Talking Heads are supplemented by additional musicians (including legendary P-Funk keyboardist Bernie Worrell) to get the maximum energy out of each new number and slap a new coat of paint on some old favorites. Join us on April 15th when we crank this one up and rock the house! (Brendan Carr)