Leonard Cohen: I'm Your Man (Lian Lunson). 105 minutes. Opens Friday (June 30). For venues and times, see Movies, page 115. Rating: NN Rating: NN
You'd think that artists engaged for a tribute concert devoted to a legendary singer-songwriter like Leonard Cohen - a show where they only sang a couple of songs and had to fly all the way to Sidney, Australia to perform - might at least bother to learn the lyrics.
With a couple of exceptions, notably Rufus Wainwright and Nick Cave , what you see in this film is singers constantly glancing down and to the right; that's where the teleprompter is.
A variety of intriguing performances are mixed in with interview footage with Cohen himself, who's more than a little bemused by all the fuss.
The cast is mostly assorted second stringers, with the McGarrigle/ Wainwright clan carrying most of the weight, but getting nothing like the pop they got for the big Dylan tribute show in 93. Of course, no one was asking Stevie Wonder and Neil Young to fly to Australia.
It's a crisp-looking film, with good sound, and I'm very grateful that Beth Orton , who assassinates Sisters Of Mercy, didn't do anything with my favourite Cohen composition, The Stranger Song.