“The question isn’t ‘how do you make a movie about grief funny?’, The question is ‘can a movie that is funny accurately and appropriately deal with grief?’
With the movie, “Band Aid” (IFC Films), Zoe Lister-Jones has given her best efforts towards the latter. As the film’s star, writer, producer AND director, Lister-Jones presents a heartfelt, if not overwrought, picture of sweetness in the midst of relational discord.
In Band Aid we meet a couple trying to love each other despite a contentious period in their long-standing marriage. The creative outlets they each pursue (together and separately) as a form of therapy (in addition to ACTUAL therapy) portray two people committed to both the emotion and action of a loving partnership. The dialogue is fast and definitely NOT loose. At times the narrative and emotional progression comes across as cliché and forced, through no fault of Zoey, as the subject matter would be tricky for anyone to fit in just over 90 minutes. But the genuine laughs experienced leave the casual viewer with a smile on their face through even the most contentious scenes.
As a musician I battle the perpetual tendency to critique movies about music, often based solely on style. I will avoid any pretense by stating that certain musical moments work while others seem to rely on “cute” rather than “excellent.” And while Band Aid is undoubtedly a film involving music, to say it is a movie ABOUT music would be selling it short. The performances (namely Lister-Jones and Adam Pally) are equal parts snark and heart-wrenching honesty, while others (Fred Armisen, Hannah Simone, Ravi Patel, etc.) offer a slightly quirkier take on the co-star or fun cameo!
At times Band Aid feels as though it’s struggling to decide what it wants to be, but dammit if each of those potential outcomes isn’t undeniably fun!
Note from Scott Carty:
Torry Anderson plays with Seattle singer-songwriter Kris Orlowski and a number of other groups, including Silver Torches. Away from his keyboard on stage, Torry loves to scour film blogs and watch movies. I’m thrilled to welcome him as a Contributor to ScottCarty.com! Fittingly, we start him off with his review of the movie BAND AID.