BUENA VISTA SOCIAL CLUB: DVD
Ry Cooder and Wim Wenders have known each other for 20 years, and worked together on the
feature films Paris Texas and The End of Violence. Cooder enthused Wenders with his
experiences in Cuba, and wanted to record an album with veteran Ibrahim Ferrer, and all
the musos who played on the Grammy winning Buena Vista Social Club album of 1997. This
time Wenders a small film crew accompanied Cooder to Cuba, to record the 'members' of that
old club, musos who had started out playing in what is now a dilapidated old house in
Havana, which once resounded to their fabulous music.
"This is really a music lover’s movie, or a movie lover’s musical movie.
Not a musical, of course. The sublime, gently erotic, often musically ‘hot’
sounds of the venerable Cuban maestros of the once famous, now defunct, Buena Vista Social
Club of Havana. The journey taken is not to try and rediscover old haunts and old sounds,
but to reaffirm the glory of music as a part of everyday life. Special music, music with
the power to change your mind and change your heart.
The DVD presents the film beautifully in widescreen, with superb surround sound that is
especially good fun at moments in the streets of Havana, as well as in the music sessions.
Additional scenes include two musical sets: one is a performance in Amsterdam (of
Candela!) and the other a recording session (of Cienfuegos).
It's gentle and warm and human and generous. It ain’t rock n' roll, but it
ain’t half hearted, either, as I said in my review of the film when it was released
theatrically. I also said: It's a series of mini concerts and recordings, as well as a
pastiche of personal profiles, and a celebration of a music that is totally captivating.
In the process, the film reminds us of the enormous riches to be found in the life
experience - and musicianship - of many older folk. It'll surprise you."
Andrew L. Urban
Audience Award, 1999 Edinburgh Film Festival
Best Documentary, 1999 Melbourne Film festival
Best Documentary, 1999 Noosa Film Festival
Publication date: January 4, 2001
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BUENA VISTA SOCIAL CLUB (G)
DOCUMENTARY FEATURING: Ry Cooder, Ibrahim Ferrer, Ruben Gonzales, Eliades Ochoa, Omara
Portuondo, Compay Segundo
PRODUCED BY: Ry Cooder
RUNNING TIME: 117 minutes
DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Dendy
DVD RELEASE: November 10, 2000