Skip to main content

UPSETTER: THE LIFE & MUSIC OF LEE 'SCRATCH' PERRY, THE

USA, 2008 (MIFF 2008, Backbeat)

Director: Ethan Higbee, Adam Bhala Lough

UPSETTER: THE LIFE & MUSIC OF LEE 'SCRATCH' PERRY, THE

“I'd like you to meet a genius.”

Some people call Lee ‘Scratch' Perry a prophet; others claim he's a madman. Seeing him in the opening scenes of this documentary - spinning in circles in his plaid shorts, oversized sunglasses, spouting the praises of Jah Rastafari - you could conclude he's a little bit of both. Kicking off in rural Jamaica, Upsetter looks into Perry's youth before segueing to the days of his musical peak in Kingston, where he mentored a young Bob Marley, shaped the reggae sound as we know it today, pioneered a new genre called ‘dub' and invented what would become ‘the remix'. A documentation of music culture and a unique character study, Upsetter uses archival and contemporary footage, interviews, concert and music clips, and dramatic recreations to detail Perry's influence across the globe.

D/P/S Ethan Higbee, Adam Bhala Lough TD digibeta/2008/70mins

See also...

BOB MARLEY: FREEDOM ROAD

"No one in rock and roll has left a musical legacy that matters more or one that matters in such fundamental ways." - Robert Palmer ... Mixing mysticism with politics in an inspired musical union ... More »

CELIA THE QUEEN

"Celia Cruz is the quintessential survival story. She looks like no one else. She sounds like no one else. And she's still the queen." - Whoopi Goldberg ... Erupting onto the Cuban music scene as the ... More »

WILD COMBINATION - A PORTRAIT OF ARTHUR RUSSELL

“Before I even heard Arthur's music, I was intrigued. My friend described a long forgotten gay disco auteur in a farmer's plaid shirt, obsessively listening to mixes of his own music on the Staten ... More »

IT MIGHT GET LOUD

“A three-headed, amped-up, guitar-shredding slamdown powered by a pan-generational trio of rock gods.” - Variety ... Filmmaker Davis Guggenheim (An Inconvenient Truth) fires up the Marshall stack ... More »

BLIP FESTIVAL: REFORMAT THE PLANET

"That goofy old Super Mario Bros jingle can be turned into one kick-ass techno tune in the right hands." - Cinematical ... Few people would consider an original Nintendo or Gameboy console as a ... More »

GUNNIN' FOR THAT #1 SPOT

“The two-dozen high-school basketballers assembled in this stupefyingly enjoyable doc are the future Iron Men of the NBA.” - Time Out NY ... Rucker Park in Harlem looks no different to any other ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director