Five years ago, Amazon Prime’s Long Strange Trip would have been a documentary. Maybe even an HBO documentary. But because this is 2018 and everything has to be a damn series, it’s a docuseries.
I’m not too sore about it, though. Each episode only lasts about 30 minutes.
The fun, perky documentary follows the Grateful Dead from their humble beginnings as committed musicians to stadium messiahs.
Here is the story of The Grateful Dead in a nutshell:
All the members got really really good at playing their instruments, participated in the acid tests, got addicted to drugs and died.
Okay, so not all of them died. I suspect bassist Phil Lesh didn’t inhale, if you know what I mean. He seems like he’s doing really well.
Deadheads bond over LSD and music, the same glue that kept the band together. Basically, if you don’t understand psychedelics, you won’t understand the Grateful Dead. But you will understand Long Strange Trip. The playful film making, coupled with riotous, sometimes sad interviews from band members, roadies, and fans, does justice to a band who just wanted to “have fun with it.”
My favorite part was when Jerry got a Warner Bros. film crew so high they just filmed each other.
Amazon delivers cinema- caliber documentary filmmaking. I can’t wait to see the what Documentary Now! does with it.
Throw on Long Strange Trip while crafting, cleaning your place or making a batch of special brownies.