Last Friday, I decided to go to my first movie in a theater since the pandemic hit in March 2020. What caught my attention and made me leave my safe and wonderful world of multi-channel bingeing was Moonage Daydream at the new (and pretty great) IMAX theater in the Topanga Westfield mall in the San Fernando Valley. Dinner and a movie – something we haven’t done in a long time.
I had no idea what the movie was about other than it was a documentary about David Bowie. It isn’t that I was necessarily a fan of his but I was looking for something different – a change of pace, if you will. And boy, did I get it!
All of the things POP | X has been touting since its inception in terms of a redefined industry encouraging those within it to be bold, fearless, creative, surprising, awe-inspiring, interesting, different, risk-taking, cheeky, unapologetic – is all wrapped up in this wonderfully inventive and imaginative film.
We all can take a cue from this movie as a true art form and something that, for me at least, has forever redefined the movie-going experience. It is the difference – or perhaps chasm is a better word — between epic an ordinary. Unlike many documentaries, this is storytelling in its purest form. Part concert, part biography, part fashion chronicle, part psychedelic trip. (My companion who will not be named here says the psychedelic trip part is authentic and as real as it gets).
What an incredible experience and a lesson in turning “time out” into a true experience. Breathtaking in its joyful blend of cinematography, animations, editing, and SFX, the film deftly weaves together a cacophony of sight, sound, and emotion (and not in a bad way!). You are transported, transferred, transcended, and transfixed as commentary gives way to music that is at once familiar and strange that gives way to images that make you feel like you are in a dream – while, somewhat eerily, David Bowie’s voice takes you on his life and career journey. And while kudos are to the filmmakers, this film couldn’t have been made without David Bowie, the man.
I found David Bowie to be an incredibly intuitive and chameleon-like human being. He was many different people at different times – but always himself – seemingly centered, grounded, and creatively daring. He was whomever he wanted to be at any given time. He was at once, deep, thoughtful, confident, and vulnerable. He envisioned and then made things happen. He reinvented himself time and time again. He lived in a creative state of mind that he shared with deliberate intent. He was gracious and thankful. Introspective and mindful. Bold and refreshing. Approachable and kind. Witty and whip smart. Funny and mischievous. Self-deprecating and honest. A showman to the core. A magnet to all he met. A master of his craft.
For me, the movie – and the man – were a happy reminder that a little bit of David Bowie is in all of us.
See the movie. Enjoy the incredible impact. And then go out there and create some of your own.