Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Pearl Jam Twenty

In the late 1980s, the Seattle grunge movement had gained momentum and one of the celebrated bands on the local circuit was Mother Love Bone. Following the overdose death of their lead singer Andy Wood, bandmates Jeff Ament and Stone Gossard teamed with Mike McCready and a brooding, powerful vocalist named Eddie Vedder. Pearl Jam found almost instant success and alongside rival Kurt Cobain's Nirvana, propelled grunge to the national stage. Cameron Crowe's "Pearl Jam Twenty" takes us through the band's soaring highs and crushing lows over the last score. Once a music journalist himself, Crowe works from a wealth of compelling footage and is able to propel his film without gimmicks or narration. There are some wonderful moments as well, such as when the band tries to piece together the song "Daughter" or during the video shoot for "Jeremy". Darker episodes are also discussed such as the infamous battle with Ticketmaster and the unfortunate tragedy where nine fans were trampled to death during the band's 2000 tour in Denmark. In addition to the footage, we also hear personal stories from all band members as well as collaborator Chris Cornell, and the band's dark, high energy music plays throughout. "Pearl Jam Twenty" is a comprehensive film of an enduring band.