Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark

Everyone, mark your calenders. The greatest musical opening since Starlight Express is about to happen. On November 14, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark will begin previews on Broadway at the Foxwoods Theatre.

Julie Taymor (Most famous for directing Disney’s The Lion King) is back in the director’s chair. She also co-wrote the libretto with Glen Berger. But that is not the most interesting part of the creative team. The music and lyrics have been written by two huge names of musical theatre: Bono and The Edge. You read that right.

You might be asking yourself just what exactly this $54 million musical is about. It really is quite simple. Peter Parker is bitten by a radioactive spider. After crying and moaning that he can’t get the girl of his dreams, he realizes that he has superpowers and attempts to use them for good. When the struggle of saving his city becomes too much for the teenage superhero, he continues to cry and moan. Only now he’s trying to turn off the dark… whatever that means.

The musical appears to be much better than that, though. Unlike the past three movies (Simply titled Spider-Man I, II, and III) this musical will actually contain a plethora of villains. Audiences can expect to see the Green Goblin, Kraven the Hunter, Lizard, Carnage, Grim Hunter, and the new villain known as Swiss Miss (Insert clever joke about the drink here).

There is no telling just how exactly this musical will turn out. It should be noted that, as stated above, the musical is going into the newly named Foxwoods Theatre. The former name of it was the Hilton Theatre, which had killed more shows than the uttering of the “M” word.

The musical officially opens on December 21. For further information about this glorious piece of theatre, check out their website.

Heading In A Backwards Direction

It Might Get Loud

Director: Davis Guggenheim, Starring: Jimmy Page, The Edge and Jack White. Released 2008.

It Might Get Loud is a documentary directed by Davis Guggenheim about guitar legends Jimmy Page, Jack White and The Edge. There is no significant connection between these three other than they are deeply passionate about their music and the electric guitar, and the documentary is simply a conversation with these three about their influences in artistic style and their experiences in making music. While listening to three guys ramble on for two hours may sound like a pretty boring documentary, I couldn’t have been any more entertained when watching this movie.

It’s always fun to get into a conversation about something you’re tremendously passionate about. You get so excited that when you can’t hold back any longer,you open up the gates and unleash a stampede of hardly comprehensible dialogue  trying to show how much you know and care about something. Or, if you can’t do that, it’s just as much fun towatch people get into conversations about stuff they’re tremendously passionate about! (Now there’s an idea for a movie!)

It’s obvious these guys love what they do. Watching Jimmy Page rock out to Link Wray’s “Rumble” with a huge, childish grin on his face or listening to Jack White’s stories about capturing soul in his music the way his Son House, backwater blues influences did, should be evidence enough.Fact of the matter is these guys are artists one hundred percent and each story they tell is twice as touching and inspiring as the last.

Air Guitarin'

Documentaries are excellent at capturing real events, thus telling great stories and It Might Get Loud definitely does not disappoint in that regard. The editing and mashing of interviews, original filming and archival footage creates an amazing aesthetic effect, and sure tells one heck of a story. One example that really stands out is when The Edge talks about a point in his life when he doubted his song writing skills and didn’t think he was a very good artist and how he was living in a time where there was “such a disregard for human life”, and then after a brief pause it cuts to footage of him playing “Sunday Bloody Sunday” in front of a massive  crowd. Good stuff.

As well as documenting stories, this film displays great camera work. From extreme close-ups of their fingers strumming to various pans and tilts of their guitars. This film not only captures the beauty of the artist, but the beauty of their instrument as well.

It Might Get Loud offers enough technical jargon to keep hardcore guitar fans satisfied and is a must see for documentary and music fans alike. Go watch it!