It's hard to criticize Chuck Workman's documentary about Andy Warhol for sticking to the surface since nothing fascinated Warhol more than surfaces. There's fun and occasional excitement in seeing Workman's speed-edited collages of the pop culture that Warhol helped create over four decades. But the film is an exasperating once-over. Using archival footage of Warhol and new interviews with family, friends and associates, Superstar makes all the dutiful stops in the life of Andrew Warhola: There's his Pennsylvania childhood as the son of Czech immigrants, his poverty, his early breakdowns, his rise in New York in the world of commercial and pop art, his classic renderings of soup cans, cartoon characters and car crashes, his celebrity portraits, his underground films, his near death from an assassin's bullet in 1968, his Studio 54 party period and his death after surgery in 1987.
But what was Warhol's impact? We get comments -- several articulate, most inane -- from the likes of Roy Lichtenstein, Dennis Hopper, Viva, David Hockney, Ultra Violet, Fran Lebowitz, Liza Minnelli and others. Warhol was gifted, incompetent, generous, cheap, homosexual, bisexual, asexual. And then there's Warhol himself, in clip after clip, saying the same thing about his art: "There's nothing behind it." After ninety minutes of watching this barrage of images, you wonder why any filmmaker would want to make a documentary that takes its subject at face value.
Category Music Video DVDs, Docudrama Movies, Education Videos, Documentary, Pop Music Videos, Biography, Interviews, Art/Artists, Artists
Starring Dennis Hopper, Andy Warhol, Shelley Winters, Liza Minnelli, Tom Wolfe, David Hockney, Viva, Taylor Mead
Director Chuck Workman
Music Bob Dylan, Pink Floyd, Kate Bush, Donna Summer, Nico, Blondie, Lou Reed, Velvet Underground