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Strange Powers2010

Stephin Merritt and the Magnetic Fields

  • 3.9
Stephin Merritt is known as "the Cole Porter of his generation" for his memorable melodies, lovelorn lyrics and wry musical stylings. Shot over 10 years, STRANGE POWERS explores his friendship with longtime bandmate/manager, Claudia Gonson. Through his recording/songwriting process, the film reveals one of the most engaging bodies of work in the contemporary American songbook.

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1 member likes this review

Good insights into the complexities of Stephin Merritt. I just wish he was less given to mumbling and was a little more willing to reveal himself. But the filmmakers made the best of it.

Member Reviews (3)

Good insights into the complexities of Stephin Merritt. I just wish he was less given to mumbling and was a little more willing to reveal himself. But the filmmakers made the best of it.

1 member likes this review

1 Star for entertainment and 1 Star for being embolden enough to play that kind of music! One word describes it best "Boring!"

1 member likes this review
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top reviewer

I love The Magnetic Fields. Stephin Merritt has some of the most compelling, sardonic, and barbed lyrics in music history. Paired with a baritone scowl, it's impossible to not feel the pangs of humor and loss. Merritt is like Whit Stillman, the musician. Without this precursor, artists such as Casiotone for the Painfully Alone and Her Space Holiday would probably not exist.

That said, this documentary feels pretty inert and incurious. If a strict introduction to the musician, it would not draw me in to Merritt's charcoal hilarity. Shame.