Sebring has no interest to explain Patti Smith, to interpret her life and work or to narrate biographical events in chronological order. Instead he presents a manifold mosaic of visual fragments and music together with permanent autocommentaries. The result is the intimate portrait of a remarkable artist that shows a lot of private (and vulnerable) sides as well as an angry political person.
Beautifully filmed portrait of an iconic artist, a film of lilting visions moving beyond the "usual" rock documentary format. It's doc form magically fitting it's subject, floating cinematography transcending time, subjects wiggling into frames sparking visions unseen before. Her raw and mesmerizing croon gives me the chills as I seep into the abyss.
This film did not seem as if it covered 10 years, except in her beginning outline of her public life. So I felt it somewhat simplified it. And that is my whole impression of this doc. Simplified or trivialized, in many ways. Unfocused. I don't really appreciate her poetry as much as many poets in her circle. I do like her music, however, which makes her poetry more accessible to me. Nicely shot, not so edited.
There is a good amount of truly beautiful moments in the film, and they nearly make up for some of the more staged shots (think: Smith staring pensively out a window or "listlessly" singing to a cat). Worth a watch if you want to know the title character better, though you may be disillusioned by her in the end.
Directed by fashion photograher Steven Sebring, Patti Smith: Dream of Life spans over eleven years of footage which gives the audience a glimpse into the singer-songwriters life. The story is told by her recent performances but for those who are unfamiliar with her music, they may not be able to learn about her albums and inspirations behind them as much as they'd want to.
Unconventional musician bio-pic, a bit un-structured, but at the same time it was more interesting visually than others in this genre. I love hearing her speak and the rhythm of her voice even when reading prose. Yes, it lingered on the deaths of many of her friends, but it wasn't morbid or depressing. Life goes on. Inspiring.
A beautifully poetic film that captures Patti Smith's philosophical and deeply thoughtful understanding of life, art and death. For those already fans of Patti it's a series of dreamy snap shots of some precious moments. For those who don't know her history and work it may be a difficult piece of film to connect with.
I loved this. I'm not sure how much I learnt about Patti, but it was more than that. Beautiful snap shots of her life, people from her past drifting through, her family, her poetry, all in a wonderful, melancholic black and white flow of ten years undertaking. She has a wonderful smile, which is not often seen in the "rock star persona" obviously adores what she does, and her friends and family. Lovely.