‘The Sparks Brothers’ Documentary Finally Recognizes The Band That Was Ignored For 50 Years

‘The Sparks Brothers’ Documentary Finally Recognizes The Band That Was Ignored For 50 Years


“The Sparks Brothers,” a documentary about the semi-obscure, semi-famous rock band Sparks by director Edgar Wright of “Shaun of the Dead” and “Hot Fuzz” fame, is an exceedingly well-made film from a true fan, although it eventually threatens to wear out its welcome.

Wright takes a fan-boy approach to Sparks, led by brothers Ron and Russell Mael, whose off-kilter, genre-spanning styles and twisted lyrics have gained them a cult following, with occasional popular breakthroughs, usually in Europe or the United Kingdom.

They have produced 25 studio albums on almost as many record labels over an astonishing 50-year career in which no one really knows what to do with them. The blurb on the film poster neatly encapsulates their elusive appeal: “Your Favorite Band’s Favorite Band.”

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Giving fair play to so much material means a two-hour-plus running time, but Wright mostly makes the time fly with creative stop-motion animation, great archival footage, more-interesting-than-usual talking heads, and general directorial cleverness.

The

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