Velvet Goldmine

Released 1998


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Movie Summary

Todd Haynes
Velvet Goldmine is the acclaimed 1998 musical drama from celebrated writer-director Todd Haynes (I'm Not There, Far From Heaven, Safe). Two young men, one British, one American, become international superstars in the early '70s, practicing a now-ignored musical style known as glam-rock. The David Bowie-based character is Brian Slade (Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, Match Point, Bend It Like Beckham, August Rush). There's also American Curt Wild (Ewan MacGregor, Black Hawk Down), whose career is languishing after a brief stint as headman of a proto-punk MC5-like garage band in the early 1970s. Slade re-animates Wild's career, brings him on tour, slathers him in mascara, sequins, and feathers, and, naturally, copulates with him. The story is told from the perspective of an English journalist, who's sent to determine what has become of Slade in 1984, long after he has dropped off the celebrity radar screen. The assignment rekindles the journalist's misguided teenage love affair with glam rock.

Metacritic Score

  • 90

    The New York Times Elvis Mitchell

    Brilliantly reimagines the glam-rock 70's as a brave new world of electrifying theatricality and sexual possibility, to the point where identifying precise figures in this neo-psyc...

  • 70

    Los Angeles Times Kenneth Turan

    Dazzling and dizzying, confusing and even annoying, Velvet Goldmine is a feverish dream of a film, a riot of color and attitude that is all pop decadence, all night long.

  • 70

    Variety Todd McCarthy

    A constantly imaginative, stylistically lively but dramatically inert chronicle of cultural and sexual rebellion.

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