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Aro Recommended Devil and Daniel Johnston, The


USA 2005, 110 minutes
Dir. Jeff Feuerzeig
Rating: [Exempt]
Genres: Music, Documentary, Cult


Aroview: Shadowy and sympathetic look at cult American songwriter Daniel Johnston, whose quirky pop gems - covered by the likes of Sonic Youth, Beck, Wilco and Pearl Jam - form phantom reflections of his fundamentalist childhood, unrequited teenage loves and an unstable mental condition.

But dir. Feuerzeig crafts more than a portrait of a disturbed artistic hero, combining Johnston's self-documenting footage from the 1980s, re-enactments of key life moments and studies of the subject in subdued middle-age, to create a kind of magical cinematic harmony. Like CRUMB, this finally transcends its immediate appeal to fans, to create a humanist study of 'outsiderness' and the often unruly personal backdrop of genius.

NZ International Film Festival 2005

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DVD Features

  • English subtitles for the hearing impaired
  • no extra features
  • aspect ratio: 1.85:1

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