Lee "Scratch" Perry: Lee Scratch Perry's Vision of Paradise DVD
For the past 15 years director Volker Schaner has followed Perry on a spiritual and geographical journey taking in Jamaica, Ethiopia, Switzerland and London. Over this period Volker has earned Perry s trust, resulting in a never-before-granted level of access and insight into Perrys fantastical, spiritual world. This classic-in-the-making tells a story of epic, magical proportions that s not a biography, more fairytale documentary and art piece for itself, which is in turns funny, poetic and frequently mind blowing.
In addition to the filmed footage of the man himself, plus an all-star cast of dub and reggae-related musicians, Lee Scratch Perry s Vision Of Paradise is illustrated by unique animated scenes. Using traditional painting techniques, the artist Maria Sargarodschi created imaginary characters of surprising contemporary style influenced by Ethiopian Christian Orthodox Church Art, Lee Perry s imaginary cosmos and the Beatles Yellow Submarine.
The movie also serves as a unique documentation of Lee s now infamous and already legendary 'secret laboratory' in Switzerland, which despite its recent destruction by fire, is immortalised in celluloid.
The DVD extras also include a photo gallery of Lee's creative space in all its chaotic and artistic pre-fire glory. Other DVD extras include a 24 page book, a 30 minute making of documentary, director's comments and over 2 hours of additional unseen scenes.
The pioneering accomplishments of reggae's most eccentric producer-vocalist aren't just thoroughly documented in Lee ""Scratch"" Perry's Vision of Paradise -- they're reimagined as the actions of a superhero fighting evil with musical instruments of mass destruction. In between animated clips, the film whirlwinds among the icon's Switzerland home, the Ethiopian birthplace of Rastafarian deity Haile Selassie and the rebuilt Black Ark Studio in Kingston, Jamaica.
The lattermost is where Perry produced transformative hits for The Wailers and others, and helped create dub, influencing countless subsequent musicians. Perry's reasons for burning down the studio in 1983 aren't entirely explained -- 'He wanted to destroy it before it destroyed him' says biographer David Katz, who is interviewed alongside numerous Perry collaborators. But overall, the movie places Perry's eight-decade career and its oddities into a compelling, deservedly timeless context. --Billboard
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