Kurt Cobain: Montage Of Heck DVD Review
Despite being well made, “Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck” does not sit well.
“Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck” doesn’t play like your average documentary. While there is plenty of stock footage and interviews/narration by the likes of Wendy O’Connor (Kurt’s mother), Don Cobain (Kurt’s father), Kim Cobain (Kurt’s sister), and Nirvana bandmate Krist Novoselic, the film is largely a long montage of art pieces, journal entries, home movies, animation, concert footage, music, and audio recordings that happen to tell the story of Cobain’s life. Among the subjects covered here are Kurt’s childhood, family troubles, youth, his love of punk rock, Nirvana, romantic interests, odd jobs, his creative process, drugs, fame, and his wife (Courtney Love) and daughter.
There’s no question that Kurt Cobain was a one of a kind artist. Not only did he change the rock music genre forever, but he was also in one of the most beloved bands of all time with Nirvana. Since his life remains a great subject of interest amongst music and Nirvana fans, it seemed like only a matter of time before there would be a documentary about his life. Unfortunately, “Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck” doesn’t feel like the right documentary to be made about him.
While writer/director Brett Morgen’s film is certainly an insightful look at Kurt’s troubled life, it’s hard to shake the feeling that this movie feels forbidden in some ways. Simply put, there are too many deeply personal and private videos on display here. Not only does it feel like an invasion of privacy, but it also seems like a betrayal of Kurt Cobain himself. Whether you’re watching intimate moments between Love and Cobain or seeing Kurt slowly unravel over time, “Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck” feels like something you shouldn’t be watching. Perhaps that up-close-and-personal approach is the allure to some folks, but to me, it feels exploitive.
Note: I received a screener copy for review so I can’t comment on the video and audio quality.
* Still gallery.
* Partially unedited interviews with Wendy O’Connor, Don Cobain, Kim Cobain, Courtney Love Cobain and an interview with writer/director Brett Morgen.
“Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck” is available on DVD and Blu-ray November 13th. The “Montage of Heck: The Home Recordings” soundtrack is also available on the same day.
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