A Sweet But Forgettable Song: Our Review of ‘The Group of Seven Guitar Project’

Posted in Movies, Theatrical by - January 31, 2018
A Sweet But Forgettable Song: Our Review of ‘The Group of Seven Guitar Project’

Nice, doesn’t always translate to compelling.

The Group Of Seven Guitar Project commissioned by the McMichael Gallery is definitely on point in being a very pretty film that highlights the artistry on display it just never felt all that engaging on an emotional level.

Seven of Canada’s finest guitar-makers come together to create seven one-of-a-kind instruments inspired by paintings from the iconic Group of Seven. This group of master builders pay tribute to our Canadian landscape rock stars of the art world; turning their craft of guitar making into a veritable art form unto itself and uniquely different yet inspired by the paintings that came before them.   Featuring performances from some of our most talented guitarists—including Bruce Cockburn, Jesse Cook, Suzie Vinnick, Kevin Breit, Don Ross and more.

The Group Of Seven Guitar Project is an interesting little ode to not only the art of the original group of seven artists here in Canada but also to the artistry in the handmade crafting of guitars, but there is a lack of compelling subjects throughout the narrative.

Directors Liam Romalis and Jason Charters have crafted a pretty looking film and are adept at filming musical performances to allow them to have some emotional impact and power to them but it all plays out very dry unless you are an art aficionado or a big time fan of any of the musicians involved.

It’s the kind of film that’s fine to appreciate in the moment, but it doesn’t hold for any kind of engagement with the characters involved and while it stems from a Canada 150 Heritage Project it’s all kind of dull.  Taking a bunch of different guitar craftsmen  who trained under noted guitar craftsman Jean Larrivée and pairing them off with the different artists in the Group of Seven has some admitted pull, but it feels like something that should be on a loop in a museum rather than playing in a theatre.

Ultimately at the end of the day, all art is subjective and while The Group Of Seven Guitar Project will have some people enjoying the music and it’s marriage to the art of the ‘Group of Seven’ painters, but it just plays a little too banal for our genuine liking.

This post was written by
David Voigt, has been a lover of cinema all his life and an actual underpaid critic for a solid 5 years covering everything that the city of Toronto has to offer. He was a content manager in video distribution industry before that and his love of all things cinema goes back to his first moments in awe looking up at the big screen. His 12 years of experience on the home entertainment side of the business have provided him with a unique view on what is worth spending your hard earned entertainment dollars on. Combine that with his unquestioned love of film, David should be your only stop to find out about the best in film, not only in Toronto, but worldwide.