The Torch


Documentary / Music

IMDb Rating 6.7 10 35

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Plot summary

Uploaded by: FREEMAN
October 26, 2022 at 12:05 AM


Top cast

1003.37 MB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 48 min
P/S ...

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by gregorymannpress-74762 6 / 10

"The Blues Chase The Blues Away"/"The Torch" written by Gregory Mann

At age 85, Buddy Guy is a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, a major influence on rock titans like Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, and Stevie Ray Vaughan, a pioneer of Chicago's fabled West Side sound, and a living link to the city's halcyon days of electric blues. Buddy Guy has received 8 Grammy Awards, a 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award and the Presidential National Medal of Arts. Though Buddy Guy will forever be associated with Chicago, his story actually begins in Louisiana. One of five children, he was born in 1936 to a sharecropper's family and raised on a plantation near the small town of Lettsworth, located some 140 miles northwest of New Orleans. Buddy was just seven years old when he fashioned his first makeshift guitar, a two-string contraption attached to a piece of wood and secured with his mother's hairpins.

In 1957, he took his guitar to Chicago, where he would permanently alter the direction of the instrument, first on numerous sessions for Chess Records playing alongside Howlin Wolf, Muddy Waters, and the rest of the label's legendary roster, and then on recordings of his own. His incendiary style left it's mark on guitarists from Jimmy Page to John Mayer. Seven years later, July 2012 proved to be one of Buddy Guy's most remarkable years ever. He was awarded the 2012 Kennedy Center Honor for his lifetime contribution to American culture; earlier in the year, at a performance at the White House, he even persuaded President Obama to join him on a chorus of 'Sweet Home Chicago'. Also in 2012, he published his long-awaited memoir, 'When I Left Home'. Buddy Guy is a genuine American treasure and one of the final surviving connections to an historic era in the country's musical evolution.

A rare artist who's always sounded older than his years, Quinn Sullivan has been touring the world since he was 11-years-old, playing storied venues such as Madison Square Garden, the Hollywood Bowl and three Montreux Jazz Festivals. Sullivan has shared the stage with his hero and mentor Buddy Guy, as well as Carlos Santana on several occasions. Quinn's performance experience includes appearances on leading national television programs such as The Ellen DeGeneres Show and Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.

We always look forward to getting whatever time we can with him, because you walk away and you feel like there's been this amazing knowledge dropped on you. There was an understanding among Buddy Guy and his peers, last man standing needs to make sure the music lives on. When B. B. King died in 2015, that promise became reality. He was already grooming his teenage protégé, Quinn Sullivan, but the urgency became palpable. It's like the Ford car, Henry Ford invented the Ford car, and regardless how much technology they got on them now, you still have that little sign that says 'Ford' on the front. It's indeed a 'Long Hard Road', which is the title of the original song created for the film. The goal of "The Torch" is to pull back the curtain on this process and watch it unfold over time. It's a film where the viewer is rewarded with an enriching experience rather than a lecture.

Written by Gregory Mann.

Reviewed by ferguson-6 7 / 10

keepin' the blues alive

Greetings again from the darkness. When Buddy Guy pops up on my playlist, I can feel it. After watching Jim Farrell's documentary, I now know why. Sure, Buddy Guy has won 8 Grammy Awards, been inducted into the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame, been awarded a Kennedy Center Award, and the Presidential National Medal of Arts. He has also influenced most every known guitar player from Hendrix to Clapton to Beck to Page to Stevie Ray Vaughan to John Mayer, and so on. But it's not until you watch him play that it all comes into focus. Buddy Guy finds joy in playing, and he also carries the burden of keeping the blues alive.

Howlin' Wolf died in 1976. Muddy Waters died in 1983. When BB King died in 2015, the legacy of the blues fell to Buddy Guy, and now he's doing what he can to ensure it lives on ... he is 85 years old, after all. So part of Farrell's documentary is about the legacy of the blues and Buddy Guy, and part of it focuses on Buddy's mentoring of guitar phenom Quinn Sullivan. We get some background on both men. Buddy was born and raised on sharecropper farm in Louisiana. He was crafting his own instruments by age 7 using wire, string, nails, and rubber bands. After playing with Howlin' Wolf and Muddy Waters for Chess Records, he will forever be associated with Chicago blues. Sullivan, a natural guitarist, first played on stage with Buddy in April 2007, at the age of seven. Since then, the two have bonded, performed, and recorded together.

Sullivan is truly the heir apparent, and Farrell includes footage of Quinn and Buddy performing live on stage together ... quite a musical experience for those in the room. We also see the two chatting it up - Buddy telling his stories and Quinn soaking it in. And as amazing as it is to watch them on stage, it's a rare treat to be allowed in the studio to film them recording a song. Farrell includes some interviews (Carlos Santana and others), and Buddy's reverence for Howlin Wolf and Muddy Waters is understandable. We are left with the hope that Buddy's polka dot playing days continue for many years and that Quinn Sullivan appreciates the torch being passed to him.

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