Rodriguez was the greatest ’70s U.S. rock icon who never was. His albums were critically well-received, but sales bombed, and he faded away into obscurity among rumors of a gruesome death. However, as fate would have it, a bootleg copy of his record made its way to South Africa, where his music became a phenomenal success. In a country suppressed by apartheid, his anti-establishment message connected with the people.
When his second album finally gets released on CD in South Africa, two fans take it as a sign, deciding to look into the mystery of how Rodriguez died and what happened to all of the profits from his album sales. Since very little information about the singer exists, they meet many obstacles until they uncover a shocking revelation that sets off a wild chain of events that has to be seen to be believed. Searching for Sugar Man is a story of hope, inspiration, and the resonating power of music. –Sundance Film Festival
My post-viewing thoughts: 1) Huge in white S. Africa, not S. Africa as a whole. 2) Daughters included but no wife or wives. 3) Why so many shots of him walking? 4) Who were the musicians who played on his recordings? 5) What's his back story? 6) Great lyrics but the music itself is kinda boring. 7) Did it really deserve the Oscar? Solid film but not moreso than the story itself.
An overview of what the critics are saying about the winners.
The tale of the disappearance and rediscovery of singer-songwriter Rodriguez premieres to generally positive reviews.
An endearing lost-and-found documentary on an artist, Rodriguez, that never got big and who’s apparently lost a lot of royalties to record companies, this is a beautifully photographed documentary… read review
“Searching for Sugar Man” (Malik Bendjelloul, 2011), touted as this year’s most popular documentary worldwide. The film already won a couple of awards at Sundance and is the odds-on favorite for an… read review