Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Roger Waters: The Wall

Written and directed by Sean Evans and Roger Waters, Roger Waters: The Wall is a concert film that captures Waters’ three-year tour and stage show performance of Pink Floyd’s 1979 album The Wall that also follows Water on the road to travel to the places where his father and grandfather had died in different wars. It’s a film that is a mixture of a concert film and documentary that play into some of the themes of the album as well as Waters’ own exploration of loss. The result is a sprawling yet effective film from Sean Evans and Roger Waters.

The film chronicles the 2010-2013 world tour from Pink Floyd co-founder Roger Waters as he performs the band’s 1979 album The Wall in its entirety with an elaborate stage production similar to what the band did back in 1980 and 1981 during its tour for the album. The film isn’t just a concert film where Waters and his band performs the album in its entirety with its immense stage production of 3D animation, lights, and films on display as a wall is being built only to be torn down in the end. It’s also a film that has Waters going on the road from Britain to France and Italy to visit the places and grave sites of both his father and grandfather. The film shifts back and forth from the concert performances to Waters on the road as he would carry the letter his mother received on the news of her husband’s death as well as a trumpet in which he would play notes of the album closer Outside the Wall.

Shot by cinematographer Brett Turnbull, Waters and Sean Evans would use the scenes on the road where Waters would converse with survivors of war and atrocities during his trip along with imagined images of war and scenes at a bar or at a house that features art direction from Fred Duru and Sam Tidman. One notable scene set at a World War I memorial in France has Waters finding the grave of his grandfather as he brings along with his three adult children in India, Jack, and Harry (who also plays organ/keyboards in Waters’ band) to the site. It would climax with Waters’ trip to Anzio where his father died and a World War II memorial site in Italy as it is a moving moment in the film that has Evans use wide shots of the location while knowing not to use any close-ups for a moment that is emotional and cathartic.

The concert scenes that is helmed by Evans with Turnbull and edited by Andrew Marcus and Katie McQuerrey do have this sense of energy that include the vast visuals that Waters presents in the film along with close-ups of some of the musicians in that band that include guitarist/bassist G.E. Smith, guitarists Snowy White and Dave Kilminster, keyboardists Jon Carin and Harry Waters, drummer Graham Broad, vocalist Robbie Wyckoff, and backing vocalists Jon Joyce, Pat Lennon, Kipp Lennon, and Mark Lennon. The concerts are shot in stadiums around Europe as including a show in Athens and Paris where Waters adds additional lyrics to Another Brick in the Wall Pt. 2 in the form of an acoustic ballad dedicated to Jean Charles da Silva e de Menezes who was misidentified as one of the terrorists of the London bombings of July 7, 2005 and was killed by authorities 15 days later. Sound designer Jacob Ribicoff would capture the sound of the live band with the aid of music producer Nigel Godrich in mixing the music and such including Waters’ trumpet solos at the memorial scenes.

Roger Waters: The Wall is an incredible film from Sean Evans and Roger Waters. It’s a film that captures the creator of one of rock’s great rock operas to perform one of his finest creations to the masses while going inward for its themes of war and loss. Fans of Waters and Pink Floyd will definitely want to see this not just for the performances of the songs from the album but also to get insight from the man who created some of rock music’s most daring recordings. In the end, Roger Waters: The Wall is a remarkable film from Sean Evans and Roger Waters.

Pink Floyd: Albums: (The Piper at the Gates of Dawn) – (A Saucerful of Secrets) – (More OST) – (Ummagumma) – (Atom Heart Mother) – (Meddle) – (Obscured by Clouds) – (The Dark Side of the Moon) – (Wish You Were Here) – (Animals) – (The Wall) – (The Final Cut) – (A Momentary Lapse of Reason) – (The Division Bell) – (The Endless River)

Live Albums: (Delicate Sounds of Thunder) – (Pulse) – (Is There Anybody Out There? The Wall Live 1980-1981)

Compilations: (Relics) – (A Collection of Great Dance Songs) – (1967: Their First Singles) – (Echoes: The Best of Pink Floyd) – (The Best of Pink Floyd: A Foot in the Door) – (1965: Their First Recordings)

Box Sets: (The Early Years 1965-1972)

Films: (London ’66-’67) – Live at Pompeii - Pink Floyd: The Wall - Pink Floyd: The Final Cut - (Delicate Sounds of Thunder) – (Pulse) – (The Pink Floyd and Syd Barrett Story) – (The Story of Wish You Were Here)

Syd Barrett: (The Madcap Laughs) – (Barrett) – (Opel)

David Gilmour: (David Gilmour) – (About Face) – (On an Island) – (Live in Gdansk) – (Metallic Spheres (w/ the Orb)) – (Rattle That Lock) – (Live at Pompeii)

Nick Mason: (Fictitious Sports) – (Profiles) – (White of the Eye)

Roger Waters: (Music from the Body) – (The Pros & Cons of Hitchhiking) – (Radio K.A.O.S.) – (Amused to Death) – (In the Flesh – Live) – (Ca Ira) - Roger Waters: The Wall Tour: 11/18/10-Atlanta, GA Philips Arena - (Is This the Life We Really Want?)

Richard Wright: (Wet Dream) – (Broken China)

© thevoid99 2018


TheVern said...

I love The Wall(The Album and the Movie) I have seen the concert Waters did at the Berlin wall in the late 80's and would love to see this. I know the footage of Waters going back and remebering his past seems like it has good intentions, but I just wanna hear the songs. Is there an option where I can just watch the concert and skip all the rest

thevoid99 said...

@TheVern-I don't know because I saw this on the HDTV movies channel. If there's an option of that on DVD, that would be cool. Yet, I think it's an entirely different thing and way better than the concert he did in 1990 at Berlin which had some cool moments but many of the guest performers were horrible. I was just glad I was able to see it live and in person as it is my favorite Pink Floyd album and it's in my all-time list of top 5 best albums ever.