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Standing in the Shadows of Motown

Standing in the Shadows of Motown

Richard "Pistol" Allen
Director: Paul Justman Cast: Richard "Pistol" Allen
Richard "Pistol" Allen
, Jack "Black Jack" Ashford
Jack "Black Jack" Ashford
, Bob Babbitt
Bob Babbitt
Paul Justman

DVD (Wide Screen)

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Overview

The history of soul music and the Funk Brothers, which is also a history of popular culture, is the subject of Standing in the Shadows of Motown and Artisan has done a brilliant job bringing this title to DVD. In today's style of documentary filmmaking, with grainy black-and-white mixed with beautiful color photography, the 1.78:1 anamorphic image really shines. Colors are vibrant and wonderfully saturated, while detail is quite strong for a documentary. Things only get better when it comes to the soundtrack. Presented in both Dolby Digital 5.1 EX and DTS 6.1 ES, these tracks are full of life, especially during the music numbers. Bass is strong and surrounds are used appropriately. While the movie itself would be worth the price, an amazing selection of extra features make this one a real deal. The movie is on the first disc, along with a commentary track from producer Allan Slutsky (he wrote the book that inspired the film) and director Paul Justman. Also included is a brief section called "How It All Began," which includes a short commentary from Justman about a photograph that helped influence the direction of the film and a promotional short film to help with financing, and contains additional interviews from the Funk Brothers. Finally, for the first disc, is an optional text "fact track" with even more information about these performers and the times they lived in. The second disc houses the remainder of the supplements, and there are plenty. Four featurettes comprise the bulk of material. The first, "Dinner With the Funk Brothers" is a roundtable with the artists as they discuss their love, friendship, and appreciation of those they worked with. The next is "The One's That Didn't Make It," which is a very emotional and sincere elegy for those band members that are no longer with us. In addition to this is "At Long Last Glory," covering the new-found success of these musicians due to this film, and the fourth is a biography section, told in a video for the Funk Brothers, and text for the main crew members. Nearly 30 minutes of deleted scenes are also included, with most being behind-the-scenes material. While hardly revelatory, they are a welcome addition. Next is a "multi-angle" jam session, also in 5.1 Dolby Digital. Fine music, but with only two angles, it doesn't offer much. Finally, along with a music video montage that is only so interesting, is a trailer for The Temptations, discographies, and "Honorable Mentions," describing other artists who worked for Motown. Last, but not least, are some DVD-ROM materials, including an high-definition version of the entire film and an interactive virtual recording studio. Enough praise can't be given to this disc and for the extra mile that Artisan went to make it as good as it is.

Product Details

Release Date: 04/22/2003
UPC: 0012236137801
Original Release: 2002
Rating: PG
Source: Lions Gate
Region Code: 1
Presentation: [Wide Screen]
Sound: [Dolby Surround, Dolby Digital Surround EX, Digital Theater Systems]
Time: 1:50:00
Sales rank: 3,584

Special Features

Closed Caption; Disc 1:; Widescreen 16:9; Audio commentary with director and producer ; 6.1 DTS-ES/5.1 Dolby-EX/2.0 Dolby Stereo; Subtitles - English and Spanish ; Trivia track ; Song selections/Performances; How it all began: "The Photo That Started It All," "The Video That Started It All"; BMWfilms.com presents The Hire: A Series of Short Films (Hostage, Ticker, Beat the Devil); ; Disc 2:; Dinner with the Funk Brothers; Multiangle jam sessions ; Deleted scenes; The ones that didn't make it ; At long last glory ; Funk Brothers video biographies ; Music video montage ; Selected discography; Honorable mentions; Hi-resolution - DVD-ROM playble version; Interactive - Virtual recording studio

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Richard "Pistol" Allen Actor
Jack "Black Jack" Ashford Actor
Bob Babbitt Actor
Johnny Griffith Actor
Joe Hunter Participant
Uriel Jones Actor
Joe Messina Actor
Eddie "Chank" Willis Actor
Benny "Papa Zita" Benjamin Actor
James Jamerson Actor
Eddie "Bongo" Brown Actor
Earl "Chunk of Funk" Van Dyke Actor
Robert White Actor
Joan Osborne Actor
Gerald Levert Actor
Me'Shell NdegéOcello Actor
Bootsy Collins Participant
Ben Harper Actor
Chaka Khan Actor
Montell Jordan Actor
Tom Scott Actor
Andre Braugher Narrator

Technical Credits
Paul Justman Director,Producer
Richard Adler Associate Producer
Affiliated Models & Talent Casting
Keith Benson Associate Producer
Christine Claussen Casting
Walter Dallas Screenwriter
Jonathan Dana Consultant/advisor
Paul Elliott Executive Producer
Anne Erikson Editor
Janice Ginsberg Associate Producer
Ted Greenberg Sound/Sound Designer
Michael Martin Associate Producer
Douglas Milsome Cinematographer
Sandy Passman Producer
Mary Petryshyn Co-producer
Dave Scott Executive Producer
Ntozake Shange Screenwriter
Al Slutsky Musical Direction/Supervision,Producer,Sound/Sound Designer
Julie Smith Casting
Lon Stratton Cinematographer

Scene Index

Side #1 -- Disc One
1. Main Title/Unheralded Dreamers [4:18]
2. Days of Innocence/Detroit [1:12]
3. Gerald Levert "Reach Out I'll Be There" [1:32]
4. "Who Are the Funk Brothers?" [3:42]
5. Joan Osborne "(Love Is Like a) Heatwave" [3:21]
6. Fearless James Jamerson [4:00]
7. Fantasyland in Studio A [2:18]
8. Meshell Ndegeocello "You Really Got a Hold on Me" [2:41]
9. One Chance, One Take [3:09]
10. Bootsy Collins "Do You Love Me" [2:00]
11. Touring Days [4:09]
12. Benny "Papa Zita" Benjamin [2:47]
13. Gerald Levert & Tom Scott "Shotgun" [3:12]
14. Johnny Griffith and the Man Around Town [6:59]
15. The Motown Formula [1:10]
16. Ben Harper "Ain't Too Proud to Beg" [3:32]
17. Earl Van Dyke and the Raw Power [3:46]
18. He Ain't Spying, He's My Brother [2:40]
19. Bootsy Collins "Cool Jerk" [2:12]
20. Earthbound and Unknown [3:16]
21. Typewriters and Tambourines [2:06]
22. Ben Harper "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" [3:31]
23. Heckyl, Jeckyl & Son [2:31]
24. Eddie "Bongo's" Licks [1:29]
25. Joan Osborne "What Becomes of the Brokenhearted" [4:16]
26. Robert White and His Oreos [3:37]
27. Meshell Ndegeocello "Cloud Nine" [3:06]
28. Up to the Babbitt Standard [3:21]
29. No Question of Race [4:05]
30. Chaka Khan "What's Going On" [3:38]
31. When Motown Left [3:15]
32. The Funk Brothers [1:40]
33. Chaka Khan & Montell Jordan "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" [2:46]
34. Hitsville, U.S.A. [:48]
35. End Credits [5:26]

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