20,000 DAYS ON EARTH, a film by IAIN FORSYTH and JANE POLLARD (Madman DVD)

 |   |  1 min read

20,000 DAYS  ON EARTH, a film by IAIN FORSYTH and JANE POLLARD (Madman DVD)

During a recent Q&A session after a screening of this film about him, Nick Cave mentioned in passing that a sequence involving Bad Seed/Dirty Three/Grinderman band member Warren Ellis wasn't true: Ellis didn't live in that particular house and he didn't cook eel as he was shown to be doing.

There were some surprised laughs, but as I looked around I got the sense that some people in the audience felt a bit duped.

However when I had introduced the film I said it would be over to them to decide whether it was a documentary, rockumentary or a mockumentary.

In truth it's actually none of those but an elaborate fiction.

Without going into all the levels of fiction at play because that would undermine the clever illusion set up, it is a film in which situations and events are manufactured, some more obviously than others.

That said however we do get to see small layers of Cave revealed in his conversations with former Bad Seed Blixa Bargeld, actor Ray Winstone and most tellingly Kyle Minogue with whom he seems the most relaxed.

And there is a set-up session with a psychiatrist.

Slowly the layers are peeled back -- he also goes through material in the "Nick Cave Archive" -- and by the end a couple of interesting themes have come through: childhood and the nature of performance.

We also get some glimpse of the creative method -- fictive set-up but no less interesting -- as he and various band members work on material.

The result is a visually stunning film by first time directors Forsythe and Pollard which, in Cave's own words at that Q&A, "a lot of truth got told within the lies".

Among the extra features on the DVD/Blu-Ray now available (which includes performances) just how much of the film is a fiction is revealed.

But that in no way detracts from the magic of a very special film.  

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Film articles index

HERB AND DOROTHY, a documentary by MEGUMI SASAKI (Madman DVD)

HERB AND DOROTHY, a documentary by MEGUMI SASAKI (Madman DVD)

This charming, low-key and multiple award-winning documentary introduces two remarkable, modest but fiercely intelligent art collectors, Herbert and Dorthy Vogel of New York who met in '60 and... > Read more

BIRDMAN, a film by ALEJANDRO G INNARITU

BIRDMAN, a film by ALEJANDRO G INNARITU

When films deal with filmmaking, actors or the theatre, they can often be insufferably coded, loaded and playing to the gallery. Asides and references –... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

GUEST DIRECTOR DAVID TRUEBA from Spain discusses his new film which isn't about John Lennon

GUEST DIRECTOR DAVID TRUEBA from Spain discusses his new film which isn't about John Lennon

The backdrop of my film Living is Easy With Eyes Closed is 1960s Spain. A place full of contradictions, grey, under the control of an authoritative regime, a generation living with... > Read more

El Hadj N'Diaye: Geej (Marabi)

El Hadj N'Diaye: Geej (Marabi)

This Senegalese singer-guitarist (here recorded in Paris) has one of those mesmerisingly soulful voices which, even though you probably don't understand a word, pulls you in. His lyrics address... > Read more