(Voiceprint/MVD; 89 mins.)
BY DOUG WALLEN
The Kinks are one of the best and enduring bands rock has
produced, and they deserve much better than the bargain-bin DVD You Really Got Me: The Story Of The Kinks (Voiceprint/MVD).
Purporting to tell the band’s story, You Really Got Me simply intersperses a disjointed documentary
structure with prolonged live footage. Some of that vintage live footage is at
least worth a look, like the mob of teens dancing to the lesser-known morsel
“I’m A Lover Not A Fighter,” but the material is handled with frustrating
clumsiness. We see the Kinks performing “You Really Got Me” in both the ’60s
and the ’80s, an interesting idea that suffers from poor execution. And longer,
later songs like “Celluloid Heroes” and “Superman” are shoehorned in before
much material that preceded them, like the far superior Village Green stuff.
Indeed, the film skips around in time without explaining it,
leaving newcomers with a jumbled sense of the band’s history. There are awkward
stabs at sentimentality, and right on cue, the ’80s portion of the story simply
features a handful of the band’s MTV videos in their entirety, mostly dropping
the narrative. The only possible saving grace might be a few fleeting
interviews cobbled from different sources and some funny glimpses of Dave
Davies’ many different looks and hairstyles. On the technical side, the DVD is
crippled by budget titles, pixilated photos, and shoddy voiceover narration
that abruptly gives way to concert footage. And not that one would clamor for
them after beholding this film, but there are no extras either.
Avoid this ham-fisted effort and wait instead for Julien Temple’s
planned biopic on the band. Or in the meantime, go the book route and check out
the idiosyncratic biographies from both Davies brothers as well as Doug Hinman’s
exhaustive discography and history All
Day And All Of The Night.
Special Features: none.