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Been watching a copy of The Talking Heads’ concert film Stop Making Sense today, and boy, does this bring back memories.
One of the first MTV videos I saw was “Once in a Lifetime,” which was so trippy that I still karate chop my forearm three times and ask myself “How do I work this?”
The film stands the test of time. It’s as good now as it was when I first saw it at the Carolina Theater in downtown Durham with best-pal The Mood. Other than the “hits” (“Once in a Lifetime,” “Burning Down the House”), I had no real knowledge of the Heads’ music. I bought the vinyl of Remain in Light, but my teenage ears found it unlistenable at the time.
But the film … that was a different story. From the pushing of the boom box to start “Psycho Killer” through “Life During Wartime” through” Take Me To the River,” the film is mesmerizing (except for the a lull between songs 7 and 8). It’s beautifully shot by Jonathan Demme (who also shot the likewise beautiful Neil Young: Heart of Gold  … oh, and he brought Hannibal Lechter to life in Silence of the Lambs).
As a concert film, this is top-notch. It plays with the boundary of documenting a musical concert and creating an artful document that stands on its own. Stop Making Sense is a benchmark for all other concert films. Although I haven’t seen Shine a Light yet.
I liked the film so much that I went again during a teenage road trip to Myrtle Beach, S.C. I took a young girl who I met to the movie, giving this film the distinction of being the only film I didn’t watch because I was too busy making out.
Oh, the memories … but I still have no idea … Why a big suit?