Almost Famous (2000)
Directed by Cameron Crowe
Starring Billy Crudup, Kate Hudson, Frances McDormand, Patrick Fugit and Philip Seymour Hoffman
I want to go in a different direction today. I want to look back a film that only won for Best Original Screenplay, I have been focusing on Best Picture winners. These are the last few days before the Oscars, so I am going to remember films that won in other categories. Like I said, this film won Cameron Crowe an Oscar for his screenplay, and it earned nominations for Kate Hudson and Frances McDormand both for supporting actress.
A little about the film. The movie is based on Crowe’s experience as a writer for Rolling Stone magazine. He toured as a teenager with legends like Led Zeppelin, Eagles and Lynyrd Skynyrd (Wikipedia, 2019). The movie follows William Miller (Crowe) as he falls in love with music when his sister leaves his brother her records when she decides to go away far from her mother. He then starts writing freelance articles and he is then taken under the wings of a rock journalist named Lester Bang who sends him on an assignment at a Black Sabbath concert, where he meets Penny Lane, a groupie or “band-aid” as she called the girls who follow the bands. William is then offered an assignment by Rolling Stone magazine to follow a band on tour and make an article about the band, he chooses Stillwater. So, William starts hanging out with the band and we get to see the ego of a rock star, their crazy way of life and the music. As he struggles to get the one on one interviews he forms two special friendships, one with guitarist Russell and one with Penny Lane. As the tour moves along things get complicated when Russell treats Penny lane badly and she almost dies and William, who loves her, saves her by calling a doctor in the hotel. By, the end he returns home and writes the article, but the band denies all that William included in the article. this causes for Rolling Stone to cancel publication of the article Later, Penny sends Russell to William believing he was going to Penny’s house, where the two reconcile and William finally gets his one on one interview.
As a fan of music and especially from that golden era when bands really played and the music was all that mattered. This movie is a tribute to that era, and Crowe does it so beautifully. Even the choice of songs goes so perfectly with the story. Like Simon and Garfunkel’s America to be the background song as Anita, William’s sister prepares to leave the house and travel. Or the great Elton John song Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters for the scene where William is looking for Penny after she is thrown out from a restaurant because Russell’s wife was there. And also an Elton John song, one of the best moments in the film was when they are all in the bus going after Russell who left because of an argument after they find him and get him on the bus, they kind of forgive each other singing the song Tiny Dancer. Or ending the movie with the beautiful Led Zeppelin song Tangerine. The music is an integral part of all our lives. it can take us to places in our hearts and remind us of people that live in our hearts.
The acting in the film is great, especially the three main actors. And Frances is really funny in the role of William’s mother. The cast also features Jason Lee, Anna Paquin, Zooey Deschanel and Jimmy Fallon.
Wikipedia. (2019). Almost Famous. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Almost_Famous