The press release sums it up this documentary rather well – “celebrating the electric guitar, the full-length documentary film Turn It Up! will be released on January 22, 2016. A cinematic and auditory tour de force, the film – shot in high definition – is a combination of stunning photography, musical performances, world-class collections, and in-depth interviews – from international legends to “everyman” collectors.”
Fair warning – it’s really for electric guitar nerds. But for the casual viewer, there are celebrity interviews viz. the late Les Paul and B.B. King (in one of his final interviews), Slash, Robby Krieger, Paul Stanley, Steve Lukather, Nancy Wilson and many others, not to mention ‘host’ Kevin Bacon.
As expected, the focus is mainly on Fender and Gibson electric guitars, and most of the documentary centres around what the electric guitar has meant to all these various players – pros and amateurs alike.
Expect quite a bit of technical jargon being thrown at the viewer, with nuggets of rock history (as impacted by the electric guitar) in the mix as well. At 90 minutes, it is a little long for a movie about a musical instrument but I guess the diehard guitar nerds out there will lap everything up.
From a neutral perspective, Turn It Up! gets rather mundane after a while but for the electric guitar enthusiasts, it’s a good film that helps to justify their obsession.