Love & Mercy harnesses the music & madness of Brian Wilson – a film review

Independent Ethos

L&M_1_SHEET_MECH_FIN_WEB1429825458Biopics are often constrained by an obligation to transmit their subject’s life in a couple of hours of cinema. While some of those films can be fine, it’s refreshing when a filmmaker can offer something different. Director Bill Pohlad and writers Oren Moverman and Michael A. Lerner do this in two ways with their exploration of the music and the madness of The Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson, Love & Mercy. First, they focus on two distinct periods of Wilson’s life. In the late 1960s Wilson took to experimenting and composing in the studio while the rest of his band went on tour. This period produced the albums Pet Sounds (1966) and its follow-up, the unreleased Smile album. In the late ‘80s, Wilson became a recluse. Back then he seemed like another causality of LSD, like Syd Barret of Pink Floyd. He was out of the spotlight and…

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