Writer-director Marc Abraham gets ambitious with this biopic about iconic country music star Hank Williams, but the film is far too choppy to provide much insight. Leaping through the decades without much context, the film never explores what made Williams such an important artist, so it's difficult to understand the impact of his tragic death at just 29. That said, Tom Hiddleston shines in the role.
Cutting around in time, the film shows Hank (Hiddleston) as a young man with a singular vision: he's determined to perform at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville. His young wife Audrey (Elizabeth Olsen) and his mother Lillie (Cherry Jones) argue about who will control his career, but Hank just gets on with it, relying on help from music publisher Fred Rose (Bradley Whitford). Finally at 26 he gets his first No 1 single, and lands a spot at the Opry, becoming a fast-rising superstar. But the chronic back pain he has suffered since childhood leads him into alcohol and drug abuse, which of course begins to take a toll on his career as well as his friendships, marriage and health.
The film skips around Williams' life, moving on to the next scene before this one seems quite finished. This means that the story is never able to build up any momentum, and also that each fragmented period of time feels under-explained. And the people around Williams appear and disappear at random, so the actors never get any traction in their roles. Hiddleston does find moments of resonance, simply because he's in every scene in the film and establishes a bit of rapport with the audience. It's also astonishing that he performs the songs himself. But Abrahams's approach to storytelling never offers any insight into Williams' fame, talents or personal life.
Continue reading: I Saw The Light Review
I Saw The Light is the new biopic about Hank Williams. The film follows his personal life and rise to fame and his tragic death at the age of 29. Having released 30 singles in a very short amount of time Hank Williams became one of the US's favourite musicians.
Having begun work in the music industry recording tracks for a radio station, eventual turn of events and the war led Williams onto starting a solo career. Both his mother and his wife played a huge part in his musical success with his wife Audrey initially managing him which led onto Hank being signed to MGM Records.
Hank always wished to be the best father he could to his child, but constant time on the road, an addiction to pain medication, alcohol topped with his promiscuous ways lead to an unstable home life, despite the wholesome image the outside world had of him.
Continue: I Saw The Light Trailer
Hank Williams was one of the most iconic country stars America has ever seen, moving crowds to their feet (and often to tears) with such hits as 'Lovesick Blues', 'Hey Good Lookin'' and 'I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry'. But away from the mic stand, his life was often in turmoil. Plagued by crippling chronic back pain from his spina bifida occulta, he found himself repeatedly drawn to alcohol which made figures in the music industry refuse to work with him, and later other substances including painkillers and morphine prescribed by a fraudulent doctor. If that wasn't bad enough, his love life was hardly blissful either; both his marriages were marred by legal misfortunes and can only be described as tumultuous and unstable. By his 20s he had developed heart problems, which ultimately led to the saddening and untimely demise of one of country music's most unforgettable legends.
Continue: I Saw The Light - In The Studio Clip
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Writer-director Marc Abraham gets ambitious with this biopic about iconic country music star Hank Williams,...
I Saw The Light is the new biopic about Hank Williams. The film follows his...