Review: ECHO IN THE CANYON Rides A Great Soundtrack Into Success

FIRST IMPRESSION

A must-see for all music lovers, Echo in the Canyon is a phenomenal and fun music documentary about some of the most creative music ever made.
Directing
Entertainment Value
Technical Merit

Home to the beginning of some of the biggest names in music, such as The Byrds, The Beach Boys, The Mamas and the Papas, and Buffalo Springfield, L.A.’s Laurel Canyon is the subject of Andrew Slater’s new documentary Echo in the Canyon. The film follows Jakob Dylan, son of folk music legend Bob Dylan, as he explores the Laurel Canyon scene and the ways it influenced music as we know it.

Going in, you may not have heard of Laurel Canyon, but you are sure to have heard of some of the musicians that have come out of it. It is interesting to see the trend traced through the different groups as they inspire and influence each other. Something that really stood out as interesting about the film’s story is the way in which the bands approached mimicry. They saw it as flattery, not theft — artists today could learn a lot from this approach.

The lens through which we approach the story of Laurel Canyon is a cover album being produced by Dylan and a group of other musicians with whom he is working. This perspective is interesting, as it allows a unique viewpoint on the music. Rather than simply being told about the music and the journey, we see the journey being recreated by people who are trying to pay homage to the musicians that came before.

This movie is very entertaining largely because of its rapid and effective pacing. The runtime is quite short, and the film dives deeply into four different groups, so there isn’t any time to be wasted. Once the story of one group is explored to its full extent, the movie moves on to the next group. As such, even if you aren’t a fan of one of the four groups, you don’t have to fret, as the movie won’t linger on them for too long.

echo in the canyon crosby

The main point of this film is to pay homage to the past, and the message it has about respecting our roots is one that is quite inspiring. Even if we think that what we are doing is small and insignificant, we can have a significant impact on future generations that look back on us and what we have done. The movie also encourages you to follow your dreams and enjoy life, because if you are passionate enough about something, you will find success.

On a technical level, the film was quite strong. The different storytelling methods including archive footage, performance footage, and interviews are blended together seamlessly. One of the most admirable things about the movie is that the filmmaker removes himself from the situation, instead allowing Dylan to conduct the interviews. The interviews are very well-shot and Dylan is a compelling interviewer because of his unique connection to the story.

Of course the music also plays a large role in the success of the film. The movie feature some of the greatest songs from the four featured bands performed both by the original musicians and Dylan’s cover group. The segment involving The Beach Boys is particularly great, as it leans heavily on their well-respected album “Pet Sounds”, which is arguably one of the greatest albums to ever be released.

Echo in the Canyon was an entertaining and well-made documentary. It offers a great history lesson on old-school pop music while offering ample opportunities to listen to some excellent tunes. People who are into music surely won’t want to miss this one.

Echo in the Canyon is now playing in select theaters.

TRENDING THIS WEEK

The Gentlemen | Movie Review

Ashley reviews The Gentlemen. THE GENTLEMEN follows American expat Mickey Pearson (Matthew McConaughey) who built a highly profitable marijuana empire in London. When word gets out that he’s looking to cash out of the business forever it triggers plots, schemes, bribery and blackmail in an attempt to steal his domain out from under him Directed…

Daryl: From Outcast to Leader | The Walking Dead

Watch Daryl's development into the leader he is now on The Walking Dead. Watch more from The Walking Dead: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z9deFaIE8QM&list=PLC7EC9FB2E211A261 Subscribe to The Walking Dead on YouTube: https://goo.gl/Tu5rSx #TWD #TheWalkingDead #Daryl THE WALKING DEAD: Like The Walking Dead on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheWalkingDeadAMC/ Follow The Walking Dead on Twitter: https://twitter.com/WalkingDead_AMC Visit The Walking Dead Official Site: https://www.amc.com/shows/the-walking-dead…

Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel: In the Spotlight ft. Erin Andrews (Clip) | HBO

Fox NFL reporter Erin Andrews tackles both professional and personal challenges in the male-dominated world of professional men's sports. Real Sports is all-new Tuesday, January 28 at 10PM on HBO. #RealSports #HBO Subscribe to HBO on YouTube: https://goo.gl/wtFYd7 Real Sports is TV's most-honored sports journalism series, with 32 Sports Emmy Awards, including 18 for Outstanding…

Dynasty | Season 3 Episode 11 | Wound That May Never Heal Promo | The CW

Stream new episodes of Dynasty Saturdays, free only on The CW App: http://go.cwtv.com/DYNyt SUBSCRIBE: http://go.cwtv.com/YTSubscribe About DYNASTY: Fallon Carrington is charismatic, cunning, and poised to become the new COO of her father’s global energy empire – or so she thinks. When her father, Blake Carrington, summons Fallon and her brother, Steven, home in Atlanta, Fallon…

Curb Your Enthusiasm: Season 10 Episode 3 Promo | HBO

Curb Your Enthusiasm is back for a landmark tenth season. Don't miss new epsiodes Sundays at 10:30PM on HBO. #HBO #CurbYourEnthusiasm #LarryDavid Subscribe to HBO on YouTube: https://goo.gl/wtFYd7 Curb Your Enthusiasm stars Larry David as... Larry David, living the good life out in Los Angeles and stumbling through one faux-pas after another. Curb Your Enthusiasm…

Star Trek: Picard | “Blue Skies” Promo | CBS All Access

Visit http://www.cbs.com/picard to sign up for CBS All Access. Try 1 week FREE. "Star Trek: Picard" premieres Thursday, exclusively in the U.S. on CBS All Access. Subscribe To "CBS All Access" Channel HERE: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrRttZIypNTA1Mrfwo745Sg For more content from "Star Trek: Picard", click HERE: https://www.cbs.com/shows/star-trek-picard/ Watch full episodes of "Star Trek: Picard" HERE: https://www.cbs.com/shows/star-trek-picard/video/ Like "Star…

All American | Season 2 Episode 10 | Protect Ya Neck Promo | The CW

Stream new episodes of All American Tuesdays, free only on The CW App: https://go.cwtv.com/ALLShowyt SUBSCRIBE: https://go.cwtv.com/ALLShowyt About All American: When a rising high school football player from South L.A. is recruited to play for Beverly Hills High, the wins, losses and struggles of two families from vastly different worlds - Crenshaw and Beverly Hills -…

The Turning | Movie Review

Ashley reviews The Turning. A young woman named Kate moves into a mysterious countryside manor after taking a job as a governess. Quickly though, she discovers that the children she has to look after and the house are harboring dark secrets and things may not be as they appear. Directed by: Floria Sigismondi Written by:…
Avatar
Sean Boelman
Sean is a film student, aspiring filmmaker, and life-long cinephile. For as long as he can remember, he has always loved film, but he credits the film Pan's Labyrinth as having started his love of film as art. Sean enjoys watching many types of films, although some personal favorite genres include dramatic comedies, romantic comedies, heist films, and art horror.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here