Being the music fan that I am, I had to check out the Ameoba Music Film Screening series at the newly installed Space 1520 (behind the Jack-On-the-Box on Sunset & Cahuenga) in Hollywood. The music themed Film Screening series is being presented every Monday throughout March. Space 1520 is a trendy indie strip mall that houses a huge bookstore, 2 clothing stores, an art gallery, and a "Snack Bar." And all surrounding a small courtyard.
Last night (3/23/09), I went to go see at Space 1520's courtyard, the music documentary, "Passions Just Like Mine." This film is quite interesting because despite being a latina myself who went to high school in Montebello (bordering East L.A.) was unaware of the cult following that Morrissey had (and still does). I'm, as you know, a somewhat hardcore Depeche Mode fan, so I was never Morrissey follower or that of The Smiths. Don't get me wrong, I did and still enjoy their music, I just am not a hardcore fan.
The director/producer (Kerri Koch) mainly emphasizes on certain individuals from the L.A. metro area who are hardcore fans. The interviews are entertaining and insightful as to why they adore and admire Stephen Morrissey. Though I did not like how much emphasis was given to a well known cover band called Sweet and Tender Hooligans (STH) and it's lead singer Jose Maldonado. I found him rather annoying. I don't think he is the authority on all things Morrissey. We got to see his band's performances and they are awful. I have been to shows of other cover bands and they do a very good job eventhough they portray their own individuality. Whereas STH do a bad job. I can't see how Morrissey fans follow these guys. I think the fame that Jose has gained has gotten to his head. I'm sorry but STH are awful. It's my opinion and I'm entitled to it.
Anyhow, aside from the annoying Jose Maldonado clips, everything else was great. I was slowly realizing that latinos really believe what Morrissey has to say. In actuality, if you listen to his lyrics a lot of the themes are real and "in your face" so I can see how he has a strong following; almost cult like. Not only did he reach out to the 80's generation, but he continues to do so with current generations. Why? Well because there will always be government oppression, loners (aka society outcasts), heart breaks, emotional depression, etc. Latinos seem to take all of these feeling to heart (though the same can be said of every other person who is breathing on this earth).
Morrissey can be best describe as how "Ameobite" (from the Amoeblog) called him a [possible] diety, which I happen to agree. I think he can be categorized as a cultural phenomenon of it's own kind or a poetic nation of intellectuals whose leader's life is a myth and a paradox. Latinos tend to be passionate and emotional about issues affecting them and thereby tend to be more expressive. A lot of the spanish speaking singers also tend to be very poetic when describing their problems and these feelings are greatly shared by all the fans. Ultimately, this is what seems to attract latinos to the worshipping of Stephen Morrissey; case in point, the Morrissey-dharma effect.
Anyhow, overall this film was educational and entertaining at the same time. And I definitely recommend" Passions Just Like Mine," especially to all fans of music and of Morrissey. Well here is a promotional clip of the music documentary. Enjoy!