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U2 Rattle and Hum [Blu-ray]

4.5 out of 5 stars 51 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Actors: B.B. King, U2, Bono, Adam Clayton, The Edge
  • Directors: Phil Joanou
  • Format: Color, Dolby, DTS Surround Sound, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
  • Region: Region A/1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: PG-13
  • Studio: Paramount
  • Release Date: July 21 2009
  • Run Time: 99 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 51 customer reviews
  • ASIN: B002EEY8LC
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #154,117 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)
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Product Description

Amazon.ca

This is not a film for anyone looking for an introduction to Irish band U2's career in the 1980s, but it is a vibrant portrait of an established group making its musical pilgrimage through the America it has always imagined through blues, gospel, and early rock 'n' roll. Filmmaker Phil Joanou (Heaven's Prisoners), a veteran music-video director and maker of the distractingly kinetic Three O'Clock High, finds a suitable outlet for his high energy in this juggernaut of a journey, which finds U2 collaborating with a black gospel choir and B.B. King, recording inside the legendary Sun Records studio, dropping by Graceland, and in a moment of fearlessness, performing the Beatles' "Helter Skelter" to exorcise Charles Manson's sick claim on the song. --Tom Keogh --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
My bias on this film should be adequately explained by my 21 years as a fan and a veteran of nearly 20 live shows dating back to the "War" tour...
This is simply the best U2 has to offer in live performances that you can go to the store and buy.
The high points:
-"Exit". The one song I was most looking forward to seeing live on "The Joshua Tree" tour, as I knew it would simply kick a** live. It did. The version in the film doesn't disappoint, though we are afforded an inordinate amount of screen time of Bono struggling with the settings for his guitar at the base of the drum riser.
-"Bad". While no better sonically, really, than the version on "Wide Awake in America" (audio only), it is a lovely version, and it leads into the better portion of the film:
-"Where the Streets..." The beginning of the color portion of the film which has a great impact after 45 mins or so of B&W photography.
-"With or Without You" I had the audio version of this movie version on CD from the late 80's, on a promo CD, and still consider this to be the best live version of the song available... Includes an extra verse not on the album version of the song, the inclusion of which has prompted me to refer to this version as the, heh heh, "songs for saps" version of the song.
-"Running to Stand Still" Every time I see this, and I mean EVERY TIME, it makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up.
-Generally speaking, the whole movie elevates the art of "concert films" to a new level. Nothing else can touch it... Absolutely nothing.
The Low Points:
-Too much humorless interview time.
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Format: DVD
I remember Rattle and Hum missing the mark with almost all critics and all but the most hardcore U2 fans. Those who did not like U2 already liked them less after the film. Remember that in 1988 most Americans still knew very little about the band and what they had learned, especially about Bono rubbed them the wrong way. They were 8 years and 5 albums into their career, but followers of the music scene considered Bono humorless, sanctimonious and unduly self-satisfied. Some probably still feel that way.
Whether that was/is true, it has nothing to do with the fact that this was some of the band's best live music ever. Whereas the studio tracks of Bullet the Blue Sky and In God's Country sound sedate and monotonous, the live versions feel like they want to jump through the speakers. Then the live Running to Stand Still sounds positively haunting. While Bono's politics have seemed pedestrian and superficial at times, this version of Sunday Bloody Sunday, shot after the Enniskillen riot, depicts Bono at his angry best. Even though his reaction might not have been as sincere as his interview suggests, the howling passion makes it worth the view. Any chance to see BB King play a guitar, including the rough cut of When Love Comes to Town.
Some of the covers feel unnecessary. Helter Skelter never needed a new version, but it gets one here. Their riff on All along the Watchtower sounds like they've heard the Dylan original, but never the immortal Hendrix perfection (the best cover done of any song for my money). Still, if that was a quid pro quo for Dylan's keyboard work on Hawkmoon 269 then we all benefit.
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Format: DVD
One reviewer noted - quite rightly - that this is not a product for converting those who don't like the music of U2. The observation is spot on. Neverheless, those who love this music - despite of (or indeed because of!) political ambitions and humourless self-righteous role that Bono carved out for himself, will admire this DVD.
The best thing is the sheer visual quality: none of the amateurish "this-will-do" half-baked rubbish that you can see so often in "tour movies". In fact, I have not seen camera work so visually accomplished for a long, long time. Large part of the film is black-and-white, and monochromatic picture is never used as a quick way for the film to appear "arty". Black-and-white is a powerful tool, but only in capable hands; and thank God in this case they managed to hire people who knew what they were doing.
Color shots are good too - never descending into Nevada-style predictable "spectacular of colors and lights" but rather sparingly using color as a tool.
The cameraman, it is obvious, enjoys close-up and aggressive light portrait work and this produces a large number of images which would make a very good still photographer proud. Again, this adds to visual enjoyment.
Interviews with band members are so-so, but mercifully they are few and far between. Overall, the film captures very well the powerful and very positive fascination with America that the band had (or still has?), and the choice of southern and west coast venues puts and extra "oomph" into this raw sense of spiritual power in the home of rock'n'roll. And the episode of rehearsal with BB King is a joy to behold: you can sense the awe of U2 artists - not exactly low-profile start-ups themselves - who play with the biggest living legend of R&B.
Definitely worth your money.
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