The year 1969 saw something amazing happen, never duplicated and never to happen again. No, I am not talking about the first time mankind set foot on the moon, nor am I talking about a Mets World Series (that has happened one more time, although who knows when it will happen again). I am referring to the festival in Bethel, NY: the "3 Days of Love & Music" festival. Woodstock.
It was a phenomenon bringing together the best of the music scene with a million like-minded individuals celebrating freedom in a big field. I cannot imagine what it must have been like to be there, especially not having been alive at the time. I have spoken to more than a few who made the mistake of not going and if they had it all to do over again they would have been there. I know I would have made the attempt.
All of that said, director Ang Lee and screenwriter James Schamus adapted the book by Elliot Tiber and Tom Monte, taking us back to 1969 and the events leading up to the concert. It is not so much a movie about the concert itself, as it is about the people and personalities involved who made it happen. It is a sweet-natured, light -hearted film, warm and inviting, and is sure to make you smile. Watch as the eclectic collection of characters cross your screen adding to the colorful tapestry of the era. It is not really a great film, nor is it terribly deep; however, it is still an involving film that cannot help but enjoy.
Elliot Teichberg (now Elliot Tiber, played by Demetri Martin) is a young interior designer living in New York City. He moves back home with his parents, Jake (Henry Goodman) and Sonia (Imelda Staunton) in White Lake, NY, to help manage and care for their motel, the El Monaco, and also serve as the president of the chamber of commerce. The family is far behind in their mortgage payments and the bank is going to foreclose, thus forcing them out of their home. Elliot has plans to bring in more tourists and hold his annual art and music festival (which amounts to lawn chairs and records) at the motel to help make the needed mortgage money.