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Monday, January 14th, 2008

Let’s Get Lost

Bruce Weber’s haunting documentary Let’s Get Lost chronicles the life of famed jazz musicial Chet Baker.  The film was first released in 1989 but has been mainly out of circulation ever since.  It is now playing until January 17th at the Nuart in a beautiful new 35mm print.  The film is a beautiful dream like idyll that depicts Chet Baker in his prime and shows his shocking erosion in the late 80s. 

What struck me most about the film was the avoidance of clich?s.  While Chet Baker was a troubled man and addict, the film avoided falling into the trap of being a conventional story like say a VH1 “Behind the Music” worse yet an “E! True Hollywood Story.”  Baker’s story is told through a series of interwoven film clips, photos and interviews with family members, ex-wives, girlfriends, children and artistic collaborators.  Chet Baker as a character is impossible to resist.  In his prime, he had James Dean type looks and radiated West Coast cool.  His vocal sound is smooth and almost hypnotic.  To see Chat Baker’s face at the time the film was shot is devastating.  Only 58 years old, he looks shockingly hard, worn and haggard due to years of cocaine and heroin abuse.  Seeing the youthful Chet Baker and the declining Chet Baker throughout the film, it is almost as if they are two entirely different worlds, both beautiful and tragic in different ways. 

The film was shot in beautiful black and white and watching it feels like you are floating along in the middle of a dream.  Let’s Get Lost  is the most visually beautiful and fully realized portrait of an artist that I’ve ever seen. 

Don’t miss your chance to see this on the big screen where it belongs. 

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Written by Karie (site owner) on 01/14 at 03:46 PM

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