Being Elmo (U)
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Time Out says
Tue Apr 24 2012This big-hearted doc tells of Kevin Clash, one of the lead creatives on ‘Sesame Street’, who as a poor, black teen in 1970s Baltimore dreamed of becoming a puppeteer. His talent was spotted in 1978 by Jim Henson’s associate, Kermit Love, and by the mid-1980s, he was working on ‘Sesame Street’ and went on to be the voice – and hand – behind the loveable and loving bundle of red fluff that is Elmo.
Constance Marks’s film is a simple cut-and-paste job, drawing on new interviews and archive, but what it lacks in refinement it makes up for in infectious warmth. Clash’s story is a ‘follow your dream’ tale as he recalls making the leap from cutting up his dad’s coat to make puppets to working for television in his twenties.
It’s a story of inheritance as much as innovation – Clash became one of the key torch-bearers of Henson’s legacy after Jim’s death in 1990. There are hints that sometimes he has had his hand so far up his puppet as to neglect family life, but watching Clash (well, Elmo) meet a terminally ill child will have you in floods.
Author: Dave Calhoun
Fri Apr 27 2012