Buena Vista Social Club

Not rated yet!
Director
Wim Wenders
Runtime
1 h 45 min
Release Date
17 February 1999
Genres
Documentary, Music
Overview
In this fascinating Oscar-nominated documentary, American guitarist Ry Cooder brings together a group of legendary Cuban folk musicians (some in their 90s) to record a Grammy-winning CD in their native city of Havana. The result is a spectacular compilation of concert footage from the group's gigs in Amsterdam and New York City's famed Carnegie Hall, with director Wim Wenders capturing not only the music -- but also the musicians' life stories.
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Conservative Film Buff1
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(Reviewers' Site/Bio)
  • Buena Vista Social Club, 1999 - ★★★★

    Wow, this was really enjoyable. Guitarist Ry Cooder takes Director Wim Wenders and crew down to dilapidated Cuba to locate some of its greatest music legends, many of whom have been forgotten for decades in Castro’s Cuba. 

    We get a personal look at their lives, their homes, the ruined streets they walk. But none of it is descriptive or narrative. It plays out in a laid back manner, mixing vignettes from their lives with footage from the recording sessions and concerts that Cooder organizes for them. The winding camera work would almost be excessive if it didn’t come off as so relaxing and introspective. 

    Toward the end, Cooder organizes a concert at Carnegie Hall. The contrast of seeing these legends in their humble, worn homes, and then playing beautifully on the New York stage, is striking to say the least.

    In the streets of New York, these humble musicians marvel at the beauty of it all. On the stage, New Yorkers marvel at them. It shows something divine and universal about humanity— that incredible music can come from anywhere.

    ...
    (Review Source)

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