Monday, December 22, 2014

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NY1 Movie Review: "Not Fade Away"

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The creator of the groundbreaking HBO show "The Sopranos" makes his directorial debut with a movie called "Not Fade Away."

David Chase made a name for himself by creating the ground breaking HBO show, "The Sopranos." Now he makes his feature film, directorial debut with a movie called "Not Fade Away."

Chase not only directs here, but he also wrote the screenplay and it's a semi autobiographical, coming of age story. The time is the 1960s and the British rock invasion is in full swing.

Doug is a suburban kid who lives in New Jersey who forms a garage rock band with some friends.

As the band struggles to get noticed, there's conflict at home as the generation gap hits hard between Doug and his father, played by James Gandolfini.

As the son starts wearing clothing to look like a rock star, his conservative dad doesn't quite understand exactly what is happening to his boy and is completely unaccepting of his kid's creative ambitions.

There's also a love interest for Doug and the film periodically focuses on the band's attempts to make it big.

Chase played drums in a rock band in New Jersey and this project is a very personal one to him.

But the characters are a bit cliched, as we've seen this storyline done before and to better effect in numerous other movies.

Plus, Chase doesn't really involve me in any of the characters. So the end result, is that I'm just not that invested in their fate.

The plot is kind of all over the place and scenes between father and son are pretty predictable.

Gandolfini, who played Tony Soprano for Chase, plays a different type of Jersey dad here.

This time he plays a beaten down dad and he and does a fine job at it.

The rest of the cast also makes due with what they have to work with.

The soundtrack, put together by Steve Van Zandt is quite good. But, overall, the movie although nostalgic and interesting at times, doesn't really add up.

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