It’s always a treat to see a documentary about one of your favourite bands and I was unbelievably excited about seeing this since I heard mention of it.
This is no ordinary music documentary though. It’s the work of Tom Berninger, brother of Matt Berninger, frontman of The National, and this allows the kind of access and insight that just wouldnt be possible for anyone else.
Rather than going for a formulaic document of a band on the road this film is as much about the filmmaker as it is about the subject. He’s on the road as a crew member but decides to turn his camera on the band in an attempt to make a film. He appears to have pretty much no idea of the type of film he’s trying to make and so this is as much an account of the experience of making a film as anything else.
All this could be be terribly dull if it wasn’t for the fact that Tom is a wonderfully charming and entertaining individual that we laugh with throughout and we really root for him when he runs into bother with the band’s management.
The film later flips on its head and becomes an incredibly moving account of the relationship between these two brothers and there’s a huge amount of soul searching as Tom seeks the opinions of family members about his level of talent.
The final product is a beautiful piece of work and something that would certainly appeal to a wide audience outside of The National’s fan base.