It Might Get Loud is a documentary mostly composed of the Edge, Jimmy Page, and Jack White sitting around with their guitars talking shop. Director Davis Guggenheim eschews the grandstanding of rock n’ roll hero worship by attempting to be specific about the artist and his or her craft, but it’s difficult to translate an artist’s internal process to concrete images on screen. By having the Edge, Page, and White share nostalgia about their past, interests in musical forms, and ways in which the guitar sound can be pushed beyond what we’ve already experienced, their creative passion transmits a genuine intimacy. But having them articulate their beliefs, while inspiring, is less compelling than simply watching them create music. They’re personalities may shine through on screen—Page feels like a white-haired old guard of the ‘60s, slightly smug but still wild-eyed with a creative fire in his belly; the Edge comes off as the pop-music version of a scientist tinkering in a laboratory; and White, whose anarchic talent is undeniable, sounds trained for clever soundbites, using his ironic sensibility to place a wall between himself an us—but we’d be better off watching concert footage of Led Zeppelin, U2, and the White Stripes to feel like we actually know them. Nearly two hours of yackety-yak is less expressive than one image of White’s hand bleeding from the intensity of pressing his guitar strings during a mad improvisation.
- Sony Pictures Classics
- 97 min
- Davis Guggenheim
- Davis Guggenheim
- The Edge, Jimmy Page, Jack White
- Slant is reaching more readers than ever before, but advertising revenue across the Internet is falling fast, hitting independently owned and operated publications like ours the hardest. We’ve watched many of our fellow media sites fall by the way side in recent years, but we’re determined to stick around.
We’ve never asked our readers for financial support before, and we’re committed to keeping our content free and accessible—meaning no paywalls or subscription fees. If you like what we do, however, please consider making a contribution.
You can also make a monthly donation via Patreon.