Turn It Up

Marketed as a guitar summit between The Edge, Jimmy Page, and Jack White, Davis Guggenheim’s affectionate, intermittently insightful behind-the-music doc is more electric triptych than meeting of the minds. Yes, the trio gather ’round the soundstage amps to teach each other a few tricks, but it’s anticlimactic — save for the schoolboy smiles of White and The Edge’s mug when Page instructs them in the finer art of piloting a Led Zeppelin. But the meat of the movie deals with their individual tales anyway: The Edge showing off the school rooms and studios where U2 became one; Page air-guitaring along to Link Wray’s “Rumble” and guiding us through the manse where the fourth Zep record was recorded; White building a guitar out of little more than wood, wire, and a Coke bottle. Guggenheim pits young’un against old fart: White bemoans “technology,” while The Edge is nothing but — so much so that U2 fans may find themselves disappointed by the revelation that the Wizard is nothing but a pile of pedals behind that arena-sized curtain. It’s Page, a joyful instructor and natural storyteller, who steals the spotlight. (Robert who? More, please.) Only real complaint: The movie’s not loud enough. They should have turned that fucker up to 11.
Sat., Sept. 12, 7 & 8:45 p.m., 2009
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Robert Wilonsky
Contact: Robert Wilonsky