Supersonic - This Movie Rocks! - Like It Could Do Anything Else?
Dir: Mat Whitecross
Starring Oasis, Us, The Rest Of The World
Coming as it does hot on the heels of Ron Howards fab-tastic Beatles doc, this in-depth look at Britain’s other greatest band is both apposite and – well – Supersonic. This is Manchester’s finest captured at their finest – the film deliberately focuses on the early years up to the crowning glory of Knebworth, the concert that galvanised 4% of the population to apply for tickets, to this day the biggest reaction to pop music in this country ever. Where were you when we were getting high? Well, we were at Knebworth actually – but that’s a story for another day.
Mat Whitecross, under the supervising eyes of those that brought us the exemplary Senna and Amy, initially pitches his movie as a modern Kane and Abel story. But on one level, he is confounded by the obvious emotional connection he finds between our heroes here – Noel and Liam - both in a hugely welcome amount of archive, as well as contemporary interviews – wisely captured off-camera so as to avoid the burden of too much hindsight.
Both brothers have always been remarkably witty – Noel in a smart, Lennon kind of way, Liam the younger in an open-nerve, what the fuck was that? kind of way. They were a perfect balance – Noel knew it, he wrote Acquiesce for God sakes, not to mention at least a couple of love songs to his brother – (I Hope, I Think, I Know for one – although we’re pretty sure he wouldn’t admit it today.) But this is not about the nasty and inevitable end, it’s about the music, the ambition, the reaching for the ring and the owning of it – if even in the end you let it drop. Better to have tried – and all that.
There’s a reason Oasis remain not only the defining band of their generation, but the closest the world ever came to another Beatles (something that of course could never be duplicated, not only musically, but socio-politically – and just about every other damn way.) They were the band who showed up for people who needed a band. There’s inevitable mention here of the whole Oasis-Blur Britpop Wars, but the differences remains clear. Blur – and don’t get us wrong – were, and are a brilliant band. But they were more the intellect, the distance. Oasis were the heart. They were the band you felt, and, like The Beatles before them, they made sure you were part of the whole thing. Oasis were inclusive – and this film reminds you of what that felt like. Which is perhaps its finest achievement.
At the end of the day, what Whitecross’ film captures better than most rock docs, what it had to capture, is that way back then, way back when these things felt important – whether it was your age, or the age – for what was barely two years, but two wonderful years, Oasis were genuinely beautiful. And how many can say that? It was a great time to be alive.
Please note – if the above review lacks our usual level of relative objectivity, we have two responses –
Firstly, we apologise;
Secondly – Fuck it!
(Still right, though.)
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