Movie Review
Shine a Light
Shine a Light poster
By Lee Tistaert     Published April 4, 2008
US Release: April 4, 2008

Directed by: Martin Scorsese

PG-13 brief strong language, drug references and smoking

Domestic Box Office: $5,355,376
73 of 117
I know it's kind of "missing the point" of a rock concert, but I would've enjoyed this feature more had Scorcese been featured more; I thought his bits were the best parts of the film.
Maybe I'm just not a big fan of rock concerts. I've only been to one in my life, a few years back, when it was The Doors performing (with a replacement for Jim Morrison), and I don’t get excited by concerts in general. This film, or more aptly - this documentary/rock-concert-put-on-film - will likely please hardcore enthusiasts of The Rolling Stones. Directed by Martin Scorcese, the first fifteen minutes feature him setting up for the show behind the scenes, and kind of annoying Mick Jagger in the process through his strict directing style which is kind of funny. But this movie kind of bored me after the halfway mark when it was really just like sitting in at a rock concert, in a movie theater, just with slices of rock culture history spliced in between. I know it's kind of "missing the point" of a rock concert, but I would've enjoyed this feature more had Scorcese been featured more; I thought his early bits were the best parts of the film.

I enjoyed the feature on a mild level for the first hour, seeing its stars on stage having a blast with their gig (and the IMAX sound was superb might I add), but after the first half of the show I just kind of got bored with it. In fact, I was sitting in the theater halfway through, thinking to myself: "Not to be a prude, but what separates this feature from simply listening to my MP3 soundtracks of The Rolling Stones on my computer at home?" But I guess I might be in the minority on this one, judging from a few of the other people in the theater who were bobbing their heads along to the musical experience. But I also felt that Scorcese didn't really shine a light on anything new about the band, more so just shining a light on what was already apparent to their fans.

I haven't seen the U2 3D film for comparison, nor the Hannah Montana thing, nor do I really plan on seeing either one (there's a higher likelihood of me seeing U2). You kind of see a feature like Shine a Light if you want to hear the music with full-on surround sound and incredible bass and appreciate the “live” aspect of it (even though it's obviously on film), and I guess I just expected more behind the scenes footage, which I initially found fascinating. Reviews are pretty good, which means perhaps it just wasn't for me.
Lee's Grade: C+
Ranked #73 of 117 between Prom Night (#72) and Righteous Kill (#74) for 2008 movies.
Lee's Overall Grading: 2946 graded movies
Share, Bookmark
Most Requested Articles
  • Craig's The Foreigner review B
    October 15, 2017    This movie still proves that an older Jackie is better than none at all. -- Craig Younkin
  • Craig's Marshall review B
    October 15, 2017    Boseman brings life to this character, whether it's Marshall's perceptiveness or his gift of gab. -- Craig Younkin