“Roger Waters The Wall”: A personal and political statement of genius

By on September 30, 2015

“Went to see Roger Waters The Wall last night at 42nd St AMC and was blown away… has to be one of the greatest Rock and Roll Docs of all time. Don’t miss if it is playing anywhere near you again on the big screen…won’t be the same on DVD. It’s rare and creatively genius to be able to make a personal and political statement within a musical journey without losing it and being overbearing. I always knew he was a genius but this film elevates him to another level!” ~ Stuart Shapiro

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Fathom Events/Picturehouse Entertainment

The film Roger Waters The Wall, directed by Waters and Sean Evans, screened on Tuesday, September 29, 2015, in theaters worldwide for one day only. The feature-length film — presented by Fathom Events and Picturehouse Entertainment — is a documentary about Roger Waters’s three-year blockbuster tour, revisiting his band Pink Floyd’s 1979 concept album The Wall.

According to the official Fathom Events announcement, viewers will be “taken on a journey that unfolds on many levels – as an immersive concert experience of the classic Pink Floyd album, a road movie of Waters’ reckoning with the past and as a stirring anti-war event, highlighting the human cost of conflict. Additionally, fans will have a unique opportunity to see The Simple Facts with Roger Waters and his Pink Floyd bandmate Nick Mason – reunited, unscripted, and in conversation to answer questions submitted the fans from around the world. Don’t miss this monumental event where music and personal passion collide.”

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Fathom Events/Picturehouse Entertainment

Roger Waters The Wall mixes stadium concert footage of Waters’s live performances — which were shot in 4K and mixed in Dolby Atmos — and footage of Waters as he stops by war memorials in France and Italy.

Here’s more from the New York Times:

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An image from the film Roger Waters: The Wall, which is screening on Tuesday in theaters worldwide for one day only. Credit: Fathom Events

“Roger Waters keeps returning to The Wall, the 1979 concept album he wrote when he was the leader of Pink Floyd. But he is not simply looking back.

The album’s latest incarnation is Roger Waters: The Wall, a film that will be shown just once, on Tuesday, in theaters worldwide: about 500 in the United States and 2,200 abroad. Further theatrical showings are uncertain, although a DVD is in the works.

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Fathom Events/Picturehouse Entertainment

Roger Waters: The Wall juxtaposes Mr. Waters’s stadium-scale theatricality with private moments. It’s primarily a documentary of the panoramic stage production of the album that toured worldwide from 2010-13.

But the story of  The Wall begins with a father’s death in World War II, and the stadium performance is interspersed with Mr. Waters’s making personal pilgrimages: his first visits to the beach at Anzio, Italy, where his father was killed in a World War II battle, and to the grave sites of his father and his grandfather, another casualty of war.

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Fathom Events/Picturehouse Entertainment

When Mr. Waters, now 72, wrote The Wall in the late 1970s, it was the extended complaint of a ‘miserable rock star,”’he said. ‘Over the years, my perspective changed.’ He gave a leisurely interview in his Manhattan living room: a light-filled, white-walled, high-ceilinged place with abstract and Pop Art on the walls, including a series of Andy Warhol’s multicolored Mao Zedong silk-screens.

‘The really insidious walls are the walls of deception” and propaganda, Roger Waters says. ‘The Wall’ depicts the rock star’s fatherless childhood with a fearful, sabotaging mother; his cruel schoolteachers; marital strife; hotel room excess; numbing drugs to get through a show; and a psychotic break that turns the singer — named Pink — into a demagogic neo-Nazi, while a wall rises between him and his fans. Eventually, he knocks it down.

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Fathom Events/Picturehouse Entertainment

‘Maybe the making of the piece was my way of escaping from the cell of isolation I found myself in as a young man,’ he said. ‘I’ve spent my life trying to find the courage to expose myself to other people in order that they may love me or not, and to discover who other people are and get them to expose themselves to me. Which is tearing down walls.’

Pink Floyd performed The Wall for its 1980-81 arena tour. The album was then transmogrified into a 1982 film, Pink Floyd — The Wall, directed by Alan Parker and full of phantasmagoric fantasy sequences. Mr. Waters was credited as the screenwriter. ‘Write, schmite,’ Mr. Waters said with a smile. ‘I sat in a room and spewed out stories. Alan would go, ‘Yeah, that’s a good one.’

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Fathom Events/Picturehouse Entertainment

Mr. Waters also mounted a production of The Wall in Berlin in 1990, the year after the Berlin Wall opened. It was celebratory yet ominous, filled with guest performers including Joni Mitchell and Van Morrison.” (there’s more at the link)

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Fathom Events/Picturehouse Entertainment

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