Preview: Music Movie Mondays – ‘Quadrophenia’

In October 1973, The Who released their ambitious 2LP set Quadrophenia. Following on from songwriter Pete Townshend’s previous conceptual/narrative works Tommy and (the aborted) Lifehouse, Quadrophenia was superior in most every way: better songwriting, more muscular arrangements, and – perhaps most significantly – a compelling story line that one could actually follow.

So it was perhaps no surprise that six years later, a film version of Quadrophenia appeared. Following the story of Jimmy, the story was set against the ‘mods vs. rockers’ scene of mid 1960s Britain. Filmed in and around Brighton, Quadrophenia is a dramatic tour de force and succeeds on many levels.

Unlike Tommy, it’s not a musical, and it features proper acting. Sting (The Police) makes a dramatic turn as Ace Face, and Toyah Willcox (today also known as the spouse of Robert Fripp) is in fine form as well.

The highly popular monthly Music Movie Mondays series at Grail Moviehouse in Asheville’s River Arts District continues with a special one-night-only screening of Quadrophenia, with a moderated discussion (led by me) to follow. May 8 at 7pm.

Tickets and more info here.