Amir Bar-Lev's 'remarkable,' 'definitive' mega-film will play in L.A. beginning Friday; New York next month
Update: Long Strange Trip earns spot on Oscar documentary shortlist
One of the most acclaimed music-themed documentaries of the year is about to return to theaters.
Long Strange Trip, director Amir Bar-Lev's 241-minute-long chronicle of the Grateful Dead, opens tomorrow (Friday the 13th) at the Fine Arts Theatre in Beverly Hills, where it will play for a week. The film is set to play in New York at the Village East from November 3-9. For those who can't make it to either city, Long Strange Trip is currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Bruce Handy, writing in Vanity Fair, called the documentary "remarkable."
"As the film makes clear, the Dead were a world unto themselves, but a world encompassing multitudes," Handy wrote.
Earlier in the week, Long Strange Trip collected a couple of nominations for the Critics Choice Documentary Awards -- best director and best music documentary. Martin Scorsese -- who has himself directed documentaries on George Harrison, The Rolling Stones and The Band -- served as executive producer on Bar-Lev's film.
[Parenthetically, the Grateful Dead was one of the first bands I ever saw live in concert. They played the Assembly Hall in my hometown of Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. What I remember best was the extraordinary quantity and variety of drugs that were consumed by a few guys who sat directly in front of me. I trust they survived the experience and went on to live long and productive lives].
Matthew Carey is a documentary filmmaker and journalist. His work has appeared on Deadline.com, CNN, CNN.com, TheWrap.com, NBCNews.com and in Documentary magazine.