David Bowie is the greatest musician of the 20th century who got to live long in the limelight. There is something about the film industry’s recent agenda for live-action classic rock biopics, from the falsified Bohemian Rhapsody (2018) to the sensationalized Elvis (2022), that lack a psyche into their respected artists. While the documentary Moonage Daydream falls in line with having eager leverage of musical nostalgia which chiefly produced those two movies’ draw, it is, however, also prioritized in sampling Bowie’s philosophical ethos, the partner core towards his sonic innovation for which made him a legend in the field. In fact, it’s the sole voice the film actually allows to speak aside from a few captured fan interviews. Many want to uncover the mystery left of him, sure, but we should moreover let the pieces that could solve such speak for themselves in defining the character which he had created from the recorded self instead of forcing it all to come together at the sacrifice of truth. Perhaps simply sharing the amount of direct information we do have is the most courteous method for what should be tapped into with the case of fallen artists.
Though, if I’m being completely blunt, this documentary essentially felt like a more intensely edited and extended — 135 minutes to be precise — version of those YouTube video tributes that are content-swelled these days on celebrities, but as a senseless idolizer of this Moonman as both an entertainer and foremost an intellectual, I still indulged in it shamelessly.
“Moonage Daydream” will be released in IMAX theaters September 16th.