Writer-director David Chase, the man responsible for The Sopranos, virtually disappeared after that infamous, sudden black screen six years ago. He returns with Not Fade Away, about a bunch of kids trying to form a rock band in the ’60s—and while it’s far from awful, it’s a bit of a dud.
Much of the blame for the plodding pace of this movie goes to John Magaro, who fails to ignite the screen as Douglas, a mediocre drummer who loves the Rolling Stones and doesn’t get along with his grumpy dad (James Gandolfini … of course). Magaro’s performance is a lesson in droning, and isn’t helped by an awful, distracting wig. He also does his own singing, and he’s no Mick Jagger.
I don’t think Chase was trying to show the joys of the times and how music enriched lives; I’m guessing he was shooting for something a little darker and real. He achieves that, but the movie is consistently boring. Everyone was expecting something a little more profound from Mr. Chase.
Special Features: There are a couple of deleted scenes, and there is some behind-the-scenes stuff, mostly dealing with the music and the casting of the band.