Brett Morgen’s Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck leaves nothing to be desired
Brett Morgen, a 47 year old American documentary film director, producer and social commentator, came into the limelight in 1996. His first film “Ollie’s Army” which he made while still a student at the New York University was inspired by the activities of the James Madison University college Republicans in the course of 1994’s Ollie North senatorial campaigns.
It was followed by “On the ropes” in 1999 which scooped an Academy Award in 2000 for Best Documentary. The much applauded boxing documentary was a combined effort with Nanette Burstein. His 2002 film “The Kid Stays in the Picture”, which he also co-directed with Nanette Burstein, focused on the life and career of Robert Evans. “Chicago 10”, a film that employs the use of animation and celebrity voice overs such as Hank Azaria and Roy Scheider came out in 2007 and ably tells the story of the Chicago Eight. In 2010 Brett Morgen successfully released June 17th, 1994 and “Truth in Motion”. “Crossfire Hurricane” which chronicled the early years of “The Rolling Stones” came in 2012.
Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck, a documentary film about ‘Nirvana’s founder and guitarist Kurt Cobain, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on January 24, 2015.
The film was much anticipated by rock enthusiasts and Cobain’s fans as it is the first documentary ever about Kurt Cobain to be written and produced with the support of his family. It gives the audience an in-depth understanding of Cobain’s life and an exclusive view of his most intimate moments. Morgen is granted access to footage from various Nirvana performances and unheard songs, as well as unreleased home movies, recordings, artwork, photography, journals, demos, and songbooks. There are also several interviews and testimonials involving people closest to Cobain several of which knew him before his fame and fortune. Perhaps the most insightful of them being the narrations by his ex-girlfriend Tracy Marander and mother Wendy O’Connor. Wendy talks of her fears and concerns for her son and the challenges that he faced especially when he was adapting to fame and how his drug abuse affected him. She tries to portray Cobain as a passionate human being first and a rock icon second. A passion close to what you’d experience with a Matchbook bonus code.
Tales of his teenage exploits and his struggles with rejection in the early days of Nirvana are brought to light and the origin of the band’s name is explained. Secrets such as the reason why he took his life and his general suicidal tendencies are revealed in the film.
Cobain and Courtney Love’s only daughter, Frances Bean Cobain, served as a co-executive producer on the film.
Brett seems not to have missed anything and this award winning documentary is considered by many cinema lovers as one of the best in recent times.