Cameron shared his Greatest Rock Movies Ever with Premiere magazine back in March, 2004. With recent docs like The Swell Season and new films such as Inside Llewyn Davis coming out soon, it might be time to revisit, but let’s check it out.
Cameron and the members of Pearl Jam shared their favorite rock documentaries with Reuters as part of the Pearl Jam Twenty press at the Toronto International Film Festival back in September. Here’s their picks:
Can I do two? Okay, Gimme Shelter and Don’t Look Back. Gimme Shelter, because it’s just amazing, on-the-fly film-making and Don’t Look Back because it just captures the white-hot heat of somebody like Bob Dylan, who’s exploding and there are cameras and microphones everywhere.
The Kids are Alright and Last Waltz. It reminded of the time I got caught smoking pot and got grounded for a week in the summer. And it wasn’t that bad, because all I did was listen to Last Waltz for 18 hours a day.
I saw Jimi plays Berkley and Jimi Hendrix (film). Those two films kind of blew my mind as a teen. And I also remember watching Freddie and his friends, about Freddie Mercury’s home life. It had nothing to do with the band Queen, just how Mercury was as a person. It was mind-blowingly cool.
There was a documentary that came out three or four years ago called American Hardcore. That was sort of the music that I learned to play and to see the footage of some of the Detroit bands and the Boston bands was pretty amazing.
Spinal Tap has got to be in there too. It really is something that affected me hugely.
I would say one life changing film was Woodstock. My first concept of a rock singer ever was probably Roger Daltrey at Woodstock doing his thing. And Hendrix, of course his version of The Star Spangled Banner was the one that went into my soul and I grabbed it, grabbed it and I ran with it.
Please chime in! What are your favorite rock documentaries?