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Not a whine, I promise. - words first
some sense later
wrayb
wrayb
Not a whine, I promise.
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al_zorra From: al_zorra Date: July 31st, 2013 02:58 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: booker on the big screen

We saw it Monday afternoon. It is very good, as film-making, a documentary with so little archival film to work with, but particularly because she stayed with her subject, making it clear this man who suffered so many demons is of interest because he was a very great musician, not because he suffered from demons. The Connick illustrations of what Booker did drove that home. We felt that Lily had put no more and no less emphasis on Booker's gay aspects than was right. Evidently there were sources she couldn't utilize because they objected to the homosexuality being in the film at all.

What did you think?

By now I've spent a lot of time with great piano players, more than one of them 'professors,' from the Valdez father and son, to Mac, thanks to Ned. He's been blessed with friendships with some of the best. But most of all this film kept me thinking about a great composer and pianist, Julius Eastman, who Ned met in that failure to continue on with academia at the U of Buffalo, and with whom the friendship continued here in NYC. Julius too was a gay black man in that same era, deeply steeped in the White European classical music traditions, shooting dope, etc. He died too, probably one of the earlier victims of AIDS. Ned was devastated.

As you say, the film seems to be speaking to the converted -- it was a good house for a Monday afternoon. Most of us claimed a prior knowledge of Booker. But these were also film heads, who spoke of the filmic aspects of it during the Q&A.

We had to leave before then though, because there was a screening of another film at the Cervantes Institute to which we were invited, from the makers of Chico and Rita, ironically.

Love, C.
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