Double Feature: Midnight Recs (Passing Strange Soundtrack)

The new computer is wonderful, though I'm still adjusting to some of the stranger Linux commands (what the heck causes the t e x t t o a u t o m a t i c a l l y s p r e a d o u t l i k e t h i s ? and in a different font than I'm working in?) Two recs for today, cause I can't pick just the one.
Midnight (Mini) Rec: X-Files: I Want To Believe
Yes, it's been critically panned. And that's because people didn't have realistic expectations. It's not an extension of the overlaying conspiracy story from the TV series; it's a monster of the week extended to feature length. The twists are genuinely unpredictable (I didn't realize the ending until one scene before the final twist was revealed), though there are plenty of clues scattered throughout to get the mind moving.
Sure, the argument of faith versus science is the same as it always was in the series, and even with the acknowledge few year absence, Mulder and Scully fall into the same exact roles.
And yes, the show has done psychics. And disappearances. And interactions with God. And even more of the plot than I'm willing to reveal.
To that I say: so what? The film works if you realize what you're watching. It's fan service, and better than most fan service tends to be (it's no Serenity, but it's certainly not as unbearable as the Sex in the City movie).
You might remember that really out there rock performance at the Tony Awards? The one that resulted in the front part of the audience reaction being a collective wtf? This one right here?

Yeah. That show was Passing Strange. It's incredible. Mostly because the music is so good. The complete show (more or less, I'm not going back anytime soon to sit there with a stopwatch and count any cuts) is presented on the live release.

Stew's storytelling musical sounds as good as it can outside of the theater. This blog is about the writing, so let's get to it. The rhymes are great: natural, and unforced. It's also very emotive without being sappy. And not just a sad song or a happy song; these songs run the gamut of emotion within a song. There's sex, there's drugs, there's racism, there's rage, and it feels right. A lesser writer would have made a mess of all Stew covers over the course of the show.

The Tony win was right: Stew wrote an incredible book for this show. The album does it justice, though nothing can top the live experience. And there was no chance it would last a long time. I'm shocked it went as long as it did.

Labels: Midnight Rec

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