Posted by:on October 5th, 2015
Directed by Bob Smeaton
At times it’s more like an infomercial than an actual documentary. A big part of the focus of this film is the lasting influence the Jam had on their fans, but that comes at the expense of seeing more things you might expect (and want) to see in a documentary about a band, such as stories about the recording sessions, gigs, tours etc.. However, there are some great audio and photographs of the Jam before they were THE JAM. It was made with cooperation from everyone in the band featuring interviews shot specifically for the film and yet you don’t get to see the three of them together in the same room. Apparently, Weller isn’t up for a reunion at any level. Surprisingly, Weller does a good job of not appearing like a pompous ass, and also does well explaining his case for ending the Jam when he did. As a fan it’s something you need to see and hear coming out of his mouth to be able to accept it finally. Closure helps, even all these years later.
Big surprise… It turns out there’s a companion CD under the same title. So this is looking more and more like a Time-Life infomercial. On the bright side, the upcoming Blue Ray disc is supposed to include a 22 track live video set from a Rockpalast show in Dortmund, Germany, recorded in 1980. This was previously only available as bootleg, so there’s that at least.
About the Young Idea will definitely get you pumped to spin your Jam records again if they aren’t still in heavy rotation, but for the most part this film comes off more like a VH1 retrospective with a nicer budget instead of a full-fledged documentary. It’s a shame really, because it’s not likely that a better one will ever be made. Although entertaining to watch, this documentary doesn’t live up to the passion the band inspired in the fans, and is ultimately disappointing.
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