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Malfunkshun: The Andrew Wood Story

"Malfunkshun" is an affecting look at a personality that could have had an impact on pop music, had not Andrew Wood over-dosed on drugs 15 years ago. Interesting mix of archival material, performance footage, family recollection and peer appraisal, docu would profit from snappier running time, with computer-animated lyrics perhaps held back for DVD release.

With:
With: Andrew Wood, Kevin Wood, Stone Gossard, Jeff Ament, Toni Wood, Chris Cornell, Kim Thayil, Brian Wood, Regan Hagar, Bruce Fairweather, Xana LaFuente.

An artifact from the time of Grunge, “Malfunkshun” is an affecting look at a personality that could have had an impact on pop music, had not Andrew Wood over-dosed on drugs 15 years ago. Interesting mix of archival material, performance footage, family recollection and peer appraisal, docu would profit from snappier running time, with computer-animated lyrics perhaps held back for DVD release.

Inspired early by Kiss, Wood took on an outrageous persona called Landrew, replete with heavy makeup and female attire. Internal darkness, related to his parents’ embattled relationship, drove him into addictions. Brothers Brian and Kevin — the latter played guitar in the title band — ended up in rehab, and Wood went on to form Mother Love Bone with future Pearl Jammers Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament. His death, at age 24, happened right after the band’s EP debut, making it hard to picture how far the music could have gone. Pic doesn’t really convince as to what Wood’s potential was, and his recessive fiancee, Xana LaFuente, doesn’t shed much light, either. Pic had its world preem at Seattle’s Experience Music Project, with Wood’s mother on hand.

Malfunkshun: The Andrew Wood Story

Production: A Dos Ojos Co. production. (International sales: Seventh Art Releasing, Los Angeles.) Produced by Scot Barbour. Co-producers, Vince Duque, Jessy Barbour. Directed, written, edited by Scot Barbour.

Crew: Camera (color, HD), Andre de Castilho; music, Andrew Wood, others. Reviewed at Seattle Film Festival (Face the Music), June 3, 2005. Running time: 107 MIN.

With: With: Andrew Wood, Kevin Wood, Stone Gossard, Jeff Ament, Toni Wood, Chris Cornell, Kim Thayil, Brian Wood, Regan Hagar, Bruce Fairweather, Xana LaFuente.

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