The Doo Dah Man – ★
Directed by Claude Green, The Doo Dah Man is the definition of a made for TV movie. It’s set in 1980s America, but it may as well be the 50s with the slow paced, gee gosh attitude and atrocious music. The blurb sounded great; a young man hitchhikes across America and comes across a con man. Think The Grifters meets On The Road – but in reality it’s Little House on the Prairie meets Huckleberry Finn.
Granted the film had a very small budget so it’s impressive that the film got finished in the first place with some recognisable actors. Glenn Morshower the most known of these plays Smitty the con man who takes Jake (Will Brittain) under his wing and teaches him the tricks of the trade. The film fails to muster any drama instead devolving into a tame melodrama that Dick Van Dyke would be ashamed to appear in. Thankfully it hasn’t secured a general release in Ireland.
A Shot of Whisky – ★★★½
Steve Graham presents a comprehensive look at one of the most important clubs in the world. The West Holywood club “The Whisky a Go Go” has played host to every major musical act in the world since the 1960s. It launched the careers of The Doors with their now infamous rendition of The End at the club and one of the biggest contributors to the documentary is the Doors’ John Densmore.
The stand out star is without question Mario Maglieri who has run the club since its hey day. The stories he recounts are witty, blunt and make you wonder about all the other ones he can’t share. He certainly knows the skeletons people have in their closets. With good stock footage and plenty of talking heads discussing the importance of the club this is a must for any music fans. Keep your eyes on the BBC4 schedule as it’s likely to make an appearance at some point in the near future.