If, like I did, you grew up listening to independent music and college radio in the 1980s, then you probably loved The Replacements. The Minneapolis band led by singer/songwriter Paul Westerberg could be brilliant and heart-rending and they could also be a shambolic drunken mess.
A new movie, “Color Me Obsessed,” tracks their career, which lasted from their formation in 1979 to their dissolution in 1991. It’s directed by Gorman Bechard and takes the rare tact of featuring neither music nor interviews with the actual band members. Instead, the movie focuses on fans of the beloved ‘Mats, as they were known, and what the music meant to them.
My colleague, Will Harris, of the Virginian-Pilot runs it down:
“Bechard rationalized that the methodology made perfect sense for a film about the Replacements, whose first video, “Bastards of Young,” consisted almost exclusively of a close-up of a stereo speaker.
“I love people who spit in the face of tradition and basically just do it for themselves,” Bechard said. “If you fall on your face, you fall on your face, but at least you fall on your face trying something new.”
The director had no trouble finding other notable musicians to offer their feelings on the ‘Mats – as the band is known to fans – with members of such acts as the Goo Goo Dolls and the Decemberists sitting down in front of the camera. Still, Bechard made certain to incorporate “average” fans into the proceedings as well.
“There’s a guy who’s in the movie a lot, his name is Robert Voedisch, and when you see the movie, you’ll understand that he’s sort of the uber-fan,” Bechard said. “He literally describes the band at one point as his oxygen, and you can tell that he really means it. In a way, they probably saved his life.”
Read the full story here.