Sunday, January 15, 2012
BEING ELMO: A PUPPETEER'S JOURNEY (2011)
Directed By: Constance Marks & Philip Shane
With: Kevin Clash, Frank Oz, Whoopi Goldberg
The film traces Kevin Clash's rise from his modest beginnings in Baltimore to his current success as the man behind Elmo, one of the world's most recognizable and adored characters. Millions of children tune in daily to watch Elmo, yet when Kevin walks down the street he is not recognized. Pivotal to the film is the exploration of Jim Henson's meteoric rise, and Kevin's ultimate achievement of his goal to become part of the Henson family of puppeteers. In addition to puppeteering Elmo, Mr. Clash is arguably the creative force behind today's Sesame Street, producing, directing and traveling around the globe training other puppeteers. Includes interviews with Frank Oz, Rosie O'Donnell, Whoopi Goldberg, Carroll Spinney, Joan Ganz Cooney, Marty Robinson, Fran Brill, and Bill Barretta.
Not only universally inspirational but also inspirational for the African American community.
Seeing someone devote their life to their passion and through skill, ingenuity and imagination. Get to not only live their dream but be mentored by his heroes.
IT also gives a glimpse into the world of puppetry. The legends of that world and the formation of sesame street. Behind the scenes of the muppets and Jim Henson’s movies. This film struck a chord with me as it shows Jim Henson and pays a proper tribute to him a man I have always admired for keeping me entertained as a child, but also for teaching me and other children. Life lessons along with the basics but also inspire us to always use and never lose our imaginations nor sense of wonder. Be Sincere in all that you do. A lesson I always took to heart and try not only to live by and express to others.
Though this film focuses on Kevin Clash he and the film still seem to be spreading that message and towards the end the film gives us hope that this message will pass to the next generation as we see a girl who seems to have the same fascination and passion as Kevin did. We get to learn a lot about his family and how he got to the position that he is at now. We even get to see him teach puppetry in Paris. Though he is shy we never get to learn too much about his personal life currently. It’s still pretty powerful though not too deep and probing. Just getting to see behind the scenes at the jim Henson company. Getting to see the workshop where they assemble and create the various different characters. Though they are only pieces of cloth and material the film and people involved are so magical that you see the puppets as real characters though essentially they are just aspects of the creators personality. I highly recommend the film for the family, kids and those young at heart.