Are Kings of Leon sinners? Have they forsaken or usurped their Southern and Christian upbringing for rock star success? And just which of the brothers or cousin Followill took up smoking first?
These questions and more may be answered in the forthcoming documentary, “Talihina Sky: The Story of Kings of Leon,” making its premiere at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival as a special screening and a “work in progress.” There’s no confirmation yet which day it screens at the Manhattan event, which runs starting April 20 through the beginning of May.
Additionally, the trailer has been made available, below. And it may be a startling contrast to fans, who are used to seeing the Tennessee-based band blasting at festivals and hearing them on rock radio. Images of the group as kids and as grown-men are contrasted with footage of charistmatic and pentecostal worship, of speaking in tongues and trances and dancing with snakes.
“As soon as I knew we were gonna get a record deal, I never slept. All night long I knew I was going to hell, I wasn’t gonna be a preacher,” says a voice, belonging (likely) to either Nathan or Jared Followill. It sets a serious tone, of three brothers (and one cousin) who seemed to be destined for the path of ministry and ended up one of the most successful rock acts from the last half dozen years.
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In one instant, singer Caleb is leading a gospel tune, the next he drinking straight from a bottle of Jack. Someone’s vomiting next to the tour van but then there’s shots of fishing in a creek, cornbread and Christmastime. Dozens of hands are raised up in the air, and it could be from a concert or from a tent revival. There should be plenty of blending two KOL traditions here.
Not sure entirely of the background on director Stephen C. Mitchell, but I’m at least intrigued, especially when the topics of religion and popular music so rarely have a serious meeting place in documentary cinema. And, hey, at least it looks more honest than that “Radioactive” video.
Check out KOL’s “Talihina Sky” here; it’s the film’s namesake.
What do you think? Would you check this film out?