Just Like Being There 2012 ★★½

One of the smartest things Just Like Being There does is to go out of its way not to ignore the “gig” part of “gig posters”. The film is thick with music in both the background and foreground, and the handful of live performances it features do a good job of capturing that certain kind of magic that only a great rock show can provide. Capturing that magic is also the goal of the posters that are the film’s main focus, but I use the term “focus” lightly. This documentary’s enthusiasm for its subject is both its biggest strength and its biggest weakness. It’s kind of like listening to a kid excitedly describing her trip to Disneyland: the story is all over the place and much too long.

The screening I saw was the world premiere, and the film had just been finished a few days before, so hopefully there is still more editing in its future. For now, it’s a mess of decent content desperately wanting for structure.


  • Thanks for the writeup; I hadn't heard about this documentary but am very interested in seeing it, lack of focus and all. On a sidenote, it's amusing to me that after the premiere of a film about posters, the film itself doesn't seem to have a poster anywhere that I can find...

  • There was a poster made for the premiere (screen printed, of course), but I think a lot of films don’t go to the trouble of designing marketing materials prior to getting a distribution deal, since distributors will then foot the fill and want to do it their own way.

  • Foot the *bill*, that is.

  • That makes snese. I'd be interested to see the screen printed ones they did for the premiere — I'll have to keep an eye on Flickr etc. for one. I'm sure with all the designers they spoke to they would have had a good pool of talent to work with!

  • *sense*. Dammit.

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