"A very funny movie especially if you are a fan of folk music."
The master of the mockumentary Christopher Guest is back with a hilarious look into the world of folk music. Those familiar with his previous films (Waiting for Guffman, Best in Show) will find the format and most of the cast familiar. I don’t think Guest would make any apologies for this as the formula works and the cast, who mainly improvise, are incredibly talented.The film opens with a newscast announcing the death of folk music icon Irving Steinbloom. His son begins to organise a concert in New York’s Town Hall in order to celebrate his father’s life and his passion for folk music. The only thing he needs to do is convince forgotten folk heroes to reform and be ready to play in two weeks time. There’s the Folksmen (Guest, Harry Shearer, Michael McKean) who have not played together for thirty years; The New Main Street Singers led by Mr and Mrs Bohner (John Michael Higgins, Jane Lynch) and then there is Mitch and Mickey (Levy, Catherine O’Hara) whose relationship ended violently resulting in Mitch having a nervous breakdown.
All the characters and actors in A Mighty Wind are fantastic but it is Eugene Levy’s portrayal of the mentally unstable and emotionally washed up Mitch who steals the show – it must have been extremely difficult for the crew to keep a straight face whilst filming his parts. Aside from the band members there are other characters who are equally hilarious including Mickey’s husband who is an eager model train enthusiast and there is the New Main Street Singers manager who will not let anyone forget his five minutes of fame on a failed TV show called Wha’ Happened? The album covers which are shown during interviews with band members should also be mentioned as they are side-splitting – anyone who has flicked through records in their local Salvation Army store will appreciate these recreations.
Overall, A Mighty Wind is a very funny movie especially if you are a fan of folk music. I cannot say I am a folk music enthusiast which is probably why I found his earlier works Spinal Tap and Best In Show more enjoyable (being an old metal head and a dog owner).But you don’t need to be interested in the subject matter in a Christopher Guest comedy as it is the oddball characters as well as the gifted cast that play them and his clever style that make his films work.