Revisiting and listening to a lot of the Floyd tracks over the past few weeks reminded me the film of “The Wall” existed so I sat around for a while at the computer yesterday watching it. Whilst nominally a Pink Floyd production, other than some credit for musical collaboration, it is totally credited to Roger Waters, a fact which probably makes Dave Gilmour more pleased than annoyed.
I’d all bar entirely forgotten about it except for the vague memory of the ‘marching hammer’ video that was accompanied the release of the title track and of course the song itself.
For a start I’d totally forgotten Bob Geldorf starred as Pink! Hard to believe but true. I’d also forgotten most of the other tracks… just as well probably because I can’t say I felt they stood up to the test of time as well as their other more ‘mainstream’ music. This was probably because much of the film revolved around RG’s cathartic attempts to blame everyone he’d ever met in his life for all the psychological demons he felt he was carrying around with him
Some of the film was quite creepy… to say the least… but Pink’s deterioration into insanity was very cleverly done though some of the violence was perhaps overdone.
Having had this wild burst of nostalgia I’ve gone out and sourced The Who’s, Quadrophenia which was released as a film in 1979 roughly around the same time that The Wall was released as an album. Perhaps it was the success of Quad that encouraged RW to embark on the project that was to culminate in the release of The Wall a few years later… not sure. Of the two I think Quad works better as a film, though perhaps musically The Wall holds its ground a little more firmly, dated though it is.
Overall, though the film reached out from the corners of my mind I can’t say I found it pleasant to either watch or listen to despite the excellent production. For me the film was disturbing so I doubt I’ll be watching it again soon. Still, it was good in some ways to remind myself of what was one of the first ‘rock operas’ ever written, and perhaps one of the longest rock videos ever made!