Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Miles Ahead (2016) **

Don Cheadle wrote, directed, and starred in Miles Ahead, an impressionistic portrait of Jazz legend Miles Davis.  The film follows Davis during a period in the 70s when he dropped out of public view.  When an aggressive Rolling Stone reporter (Ewan McGregor) tries to get an interview with the reclusive artist,  Miles enlists him to embark on a dangerous adventure to recover a lost tape.  In the midst of their odyssey, there are flashbacks to the late 50s when Davis recorded his landmark album Kind of Blue. Cheadle's charisma carries the film even when it goes off the rails with long action/chase sequences that belong in a Lethal Weapon film. Through it all, Davis remains an enigma.  Despite the unconventional structure, the movie does not avoid the cliches common to a music biopic. Despite its shortcomings, Miles Ahead makes for a fine introduction to a remarkable artist.

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