#REVIEW: “LOW DOWN”
Review by Justin Waldman for Mr. Will Wong
When it comes to Biopics based on Musicians of the sixties and seventies, the name Joe Albany doesn’t exactly jump out at you and as is the case with such Films, finding an Audience outside the Artist’s most ardent Fanbase is something of a challenge.
Low Down from Director Jeff Preiss is told from the perspective of Albany’s (John Hawkes) Daughter, Amy-Jo (Elle Fanning) and captures their life together with him as a struggling Jazz Musician. We learn about Albany‘s battle with heroin addiction and at once, Amy-Jo‘s struggles alongside him emotionally and financially. Looking to make a fresh start, he leaves his Daughter with his Mother (Glenn Close), as he travels to Europe. However being on probation, he travels illegally, making his return unlikely.
The performance from Hawkes is something that makes this Film memorable, as he allows the Audience along with him to delve into Albany‘s Character and together with him, we endure his most unfortunate circumstances together with him. Fanning has the daunting task of carrying much of the Film on her own in terms of screen time and at time we cannot help but feel she still has a bit of growing into her own to carry this weight. Close as Gram is the perfect vessel of unconditional love that becomes the heart and soul of the Story. Low Down might not be the most remarkable Biopic made on a Jazz Musician, but it certainly is worth a look.
TheArchive release Low Down in Toronto and via Video-on-Demand on Friday, November 7, 2014.