Film & TV Music

FILM REVIEW: Be Pure, Be Vigilant, Behave

Here at Quench, we are still having Sŵn festival blues. Now we are going through a quiet spell, we thought we would reminisce on such a fabulous weekend. One of the interesting events which took part over the course of the Sŵn festival weekend was the Manic Street Preachers documentary, which was premiered in coordination with Sŵn’s 10th anniversary celebrations. One of our reviewers, Dillon was lucky enough to get a seat at the premiere. Here is what he had to say…

As part of Swn music festival and in recognition of his past involvement in the festival, Welshman Kieran Evans premieres his film ‘Be Pure, Be Vigilant, Behave’ at Cardiff’s Premiere cinema. The film documents Welsh icons Manic Street Preachers on their 2014 tour celebrating the 20th anniversary of their masterpiece ‘The Holy Bible’.

In reverence to the subject matter the footage is shot and edited in an uncompromising and abrasive style. Shot over three nights of the tour, Evans focuses on one band member per night, interspersed with the group’s adoring fans, using just one small handheld camera operated by the director himself. Great emphasis is placed on a small number of fans totally lost in the music, in stark contrast to many live films which are more concerned with wide angle shots to show off the size of the crowd.

The result is the perfect accompaniment to the jarring subject matter on hand (amongst other things prostitution, the holocaust and anorexia), capturing the frenetic strobing of the stage show and purposely avoiding tired live concert tropes employed by festival film crews.

The film is a labour of love between the Manics and Evans, released by invitation of Swn and it shows.  The lack of deadlines or boundaries set by a record label allows them to fully realise the fervour which this unique album inspires in both the Manics and their fans. Overall, wholly inspiring.

Dillon Estoe