Thursday, May 2, 2024

Catching Fire The Story of Anita Pallenberg (2023)

Portrait of model, actress and muse Anita Pallenberg. She came from Italy to New York and quickly fell into the in crowd. She became the girlfriend of Rolling Stone Brian Jones before leaving him and becoming the long time paramour of Keith Richards with whom she had several children.

Largely made up of publicly unseen film footage and using Pallenberg's unpublished autobiography as the source of the narration, this is as close to hearing the story of her own life in her own words. It's a trip into the life of a woman that most of us only know as either through the lens of the paparazzi or as the woman who was a girlfriend of one of the Rolling Stones. It's a film that opens up our eyes as to who she was and what was going on around here.

I never really cared that much about Anita Pallenberg. She was always in the news because she was there. I also knew her because she was in BARBARELLA and PERFORMANCE.  As time went on I learned more about her because she was crossing through the lives of other people I was interested in. Recently, thanks to a recent documentary of Brian Jones of the Rolling Stones. 

I really liked CATCHING FIRE. I love that the film finally allows Pallenberg to step out of the shadow of the Rolling Stones and take center stage. Yes, a large part of the film does deal with the Stones, because after all that's what people will want to hear about, but at the same time the film shows us a woman who was a force to be reckoned in her own right. It's a film that changes what we thought we knew about not only Pallenberg but also the Rolling Stones.

This is a super little film. It's must see for any Stones fan, however more importantly it's a must for anyone who wants to see a great film about a intriguing woman.

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