David Byrne's American Utopia

David Byrne's American Utopia

David Byrne's American Utopia

David Byrne's critically-acclaimed Broadway show, one that unifies both the music and the audience, comes to the screen in this filmed performance directed by Oscar-winning filmmaker Spike Lee (BlacKkKlansman).

The show played at Hudson Theatre in NYC and Sydney’s ICC theatre from late 2019 to 2020. It was filmed by Lee with 11 camera operators to capture the multi-faceted production.

Choreographed by Annie-B Parson, with Tony-nominated Alex Timbers (director of Moulin Rouge!) serving as production consultant, the show finds the Talking Heads frontman performing songs with musicians from around the world. As well as performing numbers from Byrne’s American Utopia solo album, the set list includes hits from the Talking Heads’ back catalogue.

2020Rating: M, Offensive language105 minsUSA
MusicMusicalLive Performance
Director:
Spike Lee
Cast:
David Byrne

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Reviews & comments

Stuff

Stuff

press

A flat-out triumph.

Screen Daily

Screen Daily

press

Byrne pops around the stage like a man rejuvenated, or perhaps one who has never aged, without as much as breaking a sweat. How wonderful for it all to be the same as it ever was.

The Guardian

The Guardian

press

There is no moment where Byrne dramatically opens up, either on stage or off, but perhaps that’s not the point. It’s a treat for Byrne fans, and could well make converts.

4.0
A.V. Club

A.V. Club

press

The film has its own celebratory, eccentric identity.

Slant Magazine

Slant Magazine

press

American Utopia feels as much like a balm as it is a surprisingly direct call to political action and social betterment.

Slash Film

Slash Film

press

It is an overall joyous experience – infectious, you could say. Even if you don’t love all of the songs – there were a few that did nothing for me, I’ll admit – you’ll get swept up in the energy radiating from Byrne and his group, all of them throwing themselves into this strange, surreal, beautiful show.

IndieWire

IndieWire

press

American Utopia isn’t just a concert doc, but also a life-affirming, euphoria-producing, soul-energizing sing-along protest film that’s asking us to rise up against our own complacency.

RogerEbert.com

RogerEbert.com

press

David Byrne’s American Utopia is a joyous expression of art, empathy, and compassion.

Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

press

The synergy here between filmmaker and subject — from the avant-funk grooves to the spirit of inclusivity and the urge to heal a broken nation — is simply spectacular.

Variety

Variety

press

There’s nothing ironic about the title of American Utopia. It’s David Byrne and Spike Lee reveling in the majesty, and hidden magic, of the here and now.

Vanity Fair

Vanity Fair

press

American Utopia is an outstanding collaboration between two essential artists; I can’t believe there’s anyone alive who won’t be moved by this document.

Stuff

Stuff

press

A flat-out triumph.

Screen Daily

Screen Daily

press

Byrne pops around the stage like a man rejuvenated, or perhaps one who has never aged, without as much as breaking a sweat. How wonderful for it all to be the same as it ever was.

The Guardian

The Guardian

press

There is no moment where Byrne dramatically opens up, either on stage or off, but perhaps that’s not the point. It’s a treat for Byrne fans, and could well make converts.

4.0
A.V. Club

A.V. Club

press

The film has its own celebratory, eccentric identity.

Slant Magazine

Slant Magazine

press

American Utopia feels as much like a balm as it is a surprisingly direct call to political action and social betterment.

Slash Film

Slash Film

press

It is an overall joyous experience – infectious, you could say. Even if you don’t love all of the songs – there were a few that did nothing for me, I’ll admit – you’ll get swept up in the energy radiating from Byrne and his group, all of them throwing themselves into this strange, surreal, beautiful show.

IndieWire

IndieWire

press

American Utopia isn’t just a concert doc, but also a life-affirming, euphoria-producing, soul-energizing sing-along protest film that’s asking us to rise up against our own complacency.

RogerEbert.com

RogerEbert.com

press

David Byrne’s American Utopia is a joyous expression of art, empathy, and compassion.

Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

press

The synergy here between filmmaker and subject — from the avant-funk grooves to the spirit of inclusivity and the urge to heal a broken nation — is simply spectacular.

Variety

Variety

press

There’s nothing ironic about the title of American Utopia. It’s David Byrne and Spike Lee reveling in the majesty, and hidden magic, of the here and now.

Vanity Fair

Vanity Fair

press

American Utopia is an outstanding collaboration between two essential artists; I can’t believe there’s anyone alive who won’t be moved by this document.

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