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3/10/2006

DANIELSON: A FAMILY MOVIE

I'm seeing this film when it comes out - if it comes out. The trailer alone leaves me wondering if it's comedy a la A Mighty Wind or a sincerely seriously badly shot film about a talented experimental musician and his family who are accidentally hilarious. Who cares? It's interesting. At it's core the film seems to revolve around a group of musicians who happen to believe the story of Jesus is true but who, in spite of making music accepted by Rolling Stone, Paste and others are shunned by the Christian music subculture. That's more intriguing than anything in theaters is to me these days.

Here's the overview from the film's website:

Danielson: a Family Movie is a documentary about unbridled creativity vs. accessibility, Christian faith vs. popular culture, underground music vs. survival, and family vs. individuality. The film follows Daniel Smith, an eccentric musician and visual artist, as he leads his four siblings and best friend to indie-rock stardom. Beginning in 1995 when the youngest band member was 11 years old, the Danielson Famile performs in white, vintage nurse costumes to symbolize the healing power of the Good News, a recurring subject matter. Though tepidly received by the Christian music world, the South Jersey farmland-bred clan is widely embraced by the mainstream independent music community, written about in Rolling Stone, Spin, the New York Times and elsewhere as an outsider curiosity backed up by innovative, experimental music.

But as with other family acts, and particularly those that don't make much money, members of the band begin to seek out their own paths as they go through college and Daniel eventually faces the struggle to become viable as a solo act. Along the way he mentors an unknown singer-songwriter named Sufjan Stevens whose own subsequent success stands in stark contrast to the music world's uneasy reception of Danielson just a few years prior. With production starting in 2002, at a high water mark for the band, all the drama is played out before the camera making Danielson: a Family Movie both engaging and entertaining. Collage, direct cinema, animation and memorable performances all contribute to this thoughtful and thought-provoking spectacle.

The film was made with no capital investment from the Danielson Famile, its record label or any other third party.


Watch clips from Danielson: A Family Movie here and see the trailer over here.

6 Comments:

Anonymous Jess said...

This is a real band (more known in the independent music world) leading me to believe the movie is real. Crazy.

3/10/2006  
Blogger Shaun Groves said...

I know the movie is real and the band is real. I question how real the dialogue and actions of those in it are. How "reality" is it really?

3/10/2006  
Anonymous Steve Shore said...

Well... the band IS weird. No offense to them at all, but my first exposure to the Danielsen Family was the song "Potty Mouth". Have you heard that song? Now, I realize they probably had better tracks than that, but really... I will forever be tainted on them because of that one song (heard on one of those old 7-Ball discs...)

3/10/2006  
Blogger Hale-Yeah! said...

Nice steve, way to bring out 7-ball! I totally remember getting that magazine. Back in the days of Dakota Motor Co, Dryve, and Mortal! Danielson is different, but I dig 'em.

3/10/2006  
Anonymous Nick Liao said...

i worked at grassroots music for a summer and we stocked all the danielson famile cd's. we would pop em in for a good laugh during breaks. not because we hated it or were ridiculing it but just because those voices were so darn funny. good times.

3/11/2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nashville Film Festival---> April 20- 26 (exact screening info TBA) ----> www.nashvillefilmfestival.org

3/13/2006  

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