20,000 Days on Earth

2014

Action / Documentary / Drama / Music

79
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 95%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 82%
IMDb Rating 7.5 10 9187

Synopsis


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October 22, 2014 at 12:47 PM

Director

Cast

Ray Winstone as Himself
Kylie Minogue as Herself
Nick Cave as Himself
720p 1080p
752.08 MB
1280*720
English
MA15+
25.000 fps
1hr 37 min
P/S 3 / 15
1.44 GB
1920*1080
English
MA15+
25.000 fps
1hr 37 min
P/S 10 / 25

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Sergeant_Tibbs 7 / 10

Interesting and engaging, but needed a little more focus and guidance.

I really like Nick Cave. He has cameos in two of my all-time favourite films, The Assassination of Jesse James and Wings of Desire. His score for the former is my all-time favourite too, a collaboration with Warren Ellis of whom he's seen hanging out together here. This documentary, 20,000 Days On Earth, is perhaps coming a little too late or early to paint the most fascinating portrait of the rock artist, though it would have been a less catchy title. His last album is good, not great, perhaps played a little too safe. Nevertheless, his creative process is still interesting to watch as we're allowed access into the recording studio. But this isn't a straightforward documentary. It has bits of verite, fiction and interviews.

It's a shame the fiction isn't as well handled and it comes off as contrived and stilted, including when the mystical celebrity cameos keep Cave company in car journeys. It's the way the film is shot too which uses the type of photography that's fit for HD TV rather than cinema though it has its moments. However, it makes up for all that for being very insightful. The interviews are no holds barred with penetratingly honest questions. Cave explains that his biggest fear is losing his memory, and I wish the film took that as its primary thesis, looking into Cave's memory instead of an irreverent day in the life. It does have its trips into nostalgia and excels in those moments. 20,000 Days On Earth is still a very good doc thanks to its subject matter, but it needed more focus and guidance.

7/10

Reviewed by rooee 7 / 10

He came along this road

We open with Nick Cave in bed. Soon he's half-naked before the mirror. But this semi-staged documentary is no warts-and-all exposé. The lighting is kind to Cave's boyish body, and his voice-over is as precisely prepared as it is passionate and poetic. This rehearsed vulnerability sets the tone for how directors Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard will portray their elusive subject.

Their approach provides Cave with an appropriate level of control. Control is essential to the process of self-mythologising. Cave is aware that myth is what gives popular artists their enduring legacy. It's not dishonesty. Myth contains truth: the truth of how art (and the artist) makes us feel, the senses it triggers and the images it conjures. And what images Cave has conjured over the decades; from surreal punk, through broken Americana, through dark ballads and blaring gospel rock and a parade of delicious dirges.

The focus on the recording of Push the Sky Away means we hear very little of The Bad Seeds' earlier work. We glimpse The Birthday Party (and a very amusing vignette it is). But Cave and his myriad members have gone through various phases, and we get no sense of these because we hear nothing of them. Do not go into this film expecting a retrospective. Do not expect chronology, or even much revelation. Do not expect to bring a virginal friend and open their eyes to the strange, bleak, sentimental narratives of Brighton's finest immigrant. And yet it is a film for virtually everyone; for those harbouring an idea and a glimmer of interest in the creative method.

You'll know from the trailer that Ray Winstone and Kylie Minogue drop by for a ride in Cave's car. These scenes are more than just elaborate name-drops. They're framed as natural exchanges perhaps imagined or drawn from memory. Most moving is the conversation with ex-Bad Seed Blixa Bargeld, which has the air of some latent regret being cauterised.

Toward the beginning of the film there are a number of intense dialogues between Cave and the psychoanalyst Darian Leader. These scenes are deeply intimate and engaging, and it's a pity they fall away. It's indicative of the broader sense that 20,000 Days is truncated. Surely there's more footage. There is, surely, a three-hour edit of this movie, just as compelling and original and humorous. Yes, this is a double-edged criticism.

Elegantly shot and exquisitely edited, there's warmth in every frame of this movie, whether we're in the archives, scouring scuzzy photographs from Cave's youth, or in the pleasingly chaotic space surrounding the typewriter of dreams. Forsyth and Pollard carefully walk the line between hagiography and dehumanisation: Cave comes off as neither a fallen angel nor a mad recluse. But he does emerge an enigma. And that's okay, because that's how the man himself reckons we like our rock stars: slightly unreal, swaggering and contradictory, and bigger than God. I'm inclined to agree.

Reviewed by John DeSando ([email protected]) 5 / 10

Learn about the artistic process and a gifted writer/rocker.

". . . The never-ending drip feed of eroticism" Nick Cave

I'm not sure either what that quote means, but what you may get is a sense of writer/musician Nick Cave's poetic inclinations and the sensuality of his life, encapsulated in a fictional day, his 20,000 day on earth to be specific. Starring him, of course, because he is the center of his universe, and he believes, maybe a deity or an angel. He once said about his creations: "I can't explain that dividing line between nothing and something that happens within a song, where you have absolutely nothing, and then suddenly you have something. It's like the origin of the universe."

This smooth fictional biography, partially narrated by Cave, first takes us in his fine car, which he always drives, to visit his therapist (scene so relaxed and interesting I wish we could have heard the results). Then lunching with band mate Warren Ellis, where the talk is mostly music, and over to an archive brimming with his memorabilia.

Interspersed are performances with The Bad Seeds, from his almost Leonard Cohen-like poetic music to his Jagger-like rocking in Sydney (he's an Aussie), where the capacity crowd is fully under his spell. As he speaks through the music about its transforming power, he also shows us his struggle to bring poems and lyrics together. He once said about author vs. musician: "Musicians are at the bottom of the creative pyramid and authors are at the top, and many people think it's unacceptable for someone to attempt to jump from the bottom to the top of the pyramid."

Along the way we see him and his sons eat pizza and watch Scarface. Although he seems to have little time for his family, when he does, it's relaxed just the way he presents himself to us in a film that gives much more insight into an artist's creative process than we usually get with bios.

"My music has to do with beauty, and it's intended to, if not lift the spirits, then be a kind of a balm to the spirits." Nick Cave

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