Wednesday, March 25, 2015

The Wrecking Crew Seriously Lacks Focus

The more I see these Kickstarter funded documentaries the more I begin to realize what it takes to get enough people interested in helping to fund a smaller project like this... You need a huge reaching idea. Unfortunately, if you're crowdfunding such a big idea, you most likely will not actually receive enough money to give said subject a truly thorough treatment. The subject is too big.
The Wrecking Crew is just the most recent crowdfunded documentary to come out. We'll see many more like this since crowdfunding isn't going anywhere. Though hopefully people start to recognize what ideas actually have clarity and which are farther removed from a central focal point. But in theory Denny Tedesco made this flick sound like it did have that center... until you learn the reality of what "The Wrecking Crew" was. Rather than a small group of 5 to 10 people, it's something like 30 to 40 different musicians that were brought in to do all of the studio recordings for over a decade's worth of rock and roll (The Beach Boys, Frank Sinatra, Elvis, Bing Crosby, The Mamas and The Papas, Sonny and Cher, The Monkees). Essentially, these guys were playing the band's parts... inventing the bands parts... and playing them better than the band themselves.
If there were an actual story at the heart of this thing, it could be very powerful. But the film succumbs to its oversized, globular, ever-changing center. This was not one band doing all of the work as the ads seemed to imply. It was an entire industry of inside musicians. It's a film that tries to be about too many people. And that's where it fails to grasp the necessary focus to become a truly compelling movie.
I don't mean to knock it too much however. The Wrecking Crew tried to pay these musicians their due. And they clearly deserve some recognition for what they created back in the day. It just falls flat whenever something interesting could be brought up. Tedesco's film really plays like an overextended infomercial for a record that never gets a chance to breathe and play out since so much is being crammed into it. Ultimately I'd say, wait for it to come out on Netflix. These guys already got your money a long time ago.

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