SXSW Review: Sunset Strip The Movie

By Renee Collins

Rating: 2.5 (Out of 5)

This film is an in depth and historical look at the legendary road called the Sunset Strip, a mile-and-a-half stretch of Sunset Boulevard, in West Hollywood, California.  Director Hans Fjellestad, looked like a laid back hippy when I saw him on the red carpet, but was very nice and answered all of my movie buddy’s questions while I took pictures. 

The film explores the history of the Sunset Strip from its origins to today.  It was interesting to see how many actors, comedians and musicians participated in this film talking about their history with the strip.  It includes interviews stars like Johnny Depp, Ozzy Osbourne, Slash, Hugh Hefner, Sharon Stone, Mickey Rourke, Keanu Reeves and many more.  I was surprised at the variety of people who participated in this documentary.  Most notably, Johnny Depp who owns a night club on the strip, I didn’t know that.

The film is well made but the audio fluctuated throughout the film and I found it off putting.  Other than that, everything else technically was fine.  The film progressed with a review of each decade since the strip was created detailing a checkered past involving drugs, alcohol, crime and music.  I thought this film ran too long because each decade is covered at length, which is only being thorough, but in the end for some reason, they decided to create an animated version of what they discuss happening in each decade.  My movie buddy and I left before that ended because we were bored and had already seen what they were showing us in animation at the end of the movie.

I found this movie interesting to a point but think it a bit long winded with the end animation not necessary.  I think if would have been interesting to break the animation portion up and use it within the review of the decades.  All in all I feel it is a good film, but I see no reason to watch it in a movie theater. Just wait for the video.

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