Saturday, April 25, 2015

Sean Kelly

Hot Docs 2015: Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck

Kurt_Cobain_Montage_of_Heck

The story of Nirvana-frontman Kurt Cobain is told in his old words in Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck.  Utilizing Cobain’s own art, music, journals, Super 8 films and audio montages, director Brett Morgen constructs this stylized biography of the late singer’s life.  From his early days in Aberdeen, Washington to his marriage to Courtney Love, the film reveals the human being behind the Nirvana frontman.

Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck is a fully authorized biography, which sets out to tell the definitive story of the Nirvana frontman.  It has now been more than two decades since Kurt Cobain’s suicide and there is still much enigma over what exactly was going on in Cobain’s head.  Using old journal entries, home movies, and audio recordings, Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck focuses primarily on Cobain’s private life.  The film features interviews with many individuals in his life, including his parents, Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic, and Courtney Love.  The film also features a number of animated re-enactments, which uses audio of Cobain to essentially bring the singer back to life.

Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck really has the right title, since the film is a mix of many different elements.  The film features everything from traditional talking head interviews to grainy performance footage to multiple animated sequences.  In fact, the animated re-enactments, which have a rotoscoped feel to them, are probably the most impressive element of the film.  Not surprisingly, the soundtrack of the film is made up of Nirvana’s songs, even though the film occasionally would use an alternate version, such as “Smells Like Teen Spirit” sung by a children’s choir.  While it’s not a perfect film, Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck is still a visually interesting peak into Kurt Cobain’s personal life.

★ ★ ★ ★ | LIKED IT

Screenings:

  • Sat, Apr 25, 1:15 PM – Bloor Hot Docs Cinema

Sean Kelly

About Sean Kelly -

Sean Patrick Kelly is a self-described ├╝ber-geek, who has been an avid film lover for all his life. He graduated from York University in 2010 with an honours B.A. in Cinema and Media Studies and he likes to believe he knows what he’s talking about when he writes about film (despite occasionally going on pointless rants).