“It’s So Easy And Other Lies”
Starring: Duff McKagan
Director: Christopher Duddy
Runtime: 86 minutes
Our score: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Based on the New York Times best-selling memoir and featuring exclusive archival footage “It’s So Easy And Other Lies” is an authorized music documentary of Duff McKagan- founding member and bass player for Guns N’ Roses, Velvet Revolver and other bands. The film chronicles Duff’s meteoric rise to fame and fortune, his near fatal struggles with alcohol and drug addiction, and his remarkable life transformation.
One half performance footage from Duff’s book reading at The Moore Theater in Seattle, WA and one half documentary consisting of archival footage and new interviews with former/current band members and friends. “It’s So Easy And Other Lies” is a unique spin on your standard biographical documentary. I really enjoyed the clips of Duff reading passages from his book backed by a band performing melodic renditions of such classic GN’R songs as “Rocket Queen” and “Paradise City” as it was a really cool addition which makes the film stand out from other films in the genre that I have seen recently. With interview from Duff, Slash, Mike McCready and others acting as segues to the performance material you really get a nice balance of music and dialogue.
Though I found some of the editing to be a little awkward at times as the performance footage tends to start and stop without the viewer really knowing where we are at in Duff’s story. At times it’s as though large portions of Duff’s story are either not expanded upon or just plain left out as is the case with some of the earlier days of Guns N’ Roses. Because of this gap and a few others it made things seem as though Duff one minute is a struggling young musician and the next he’s in the biggest band in the world. Obviously when a book is transformed to film parts are going to be left out or trimmed down but this seemed to be a really large piece of Duff’s story that sort of just got skirt around. That aside whether you are a fan of Duff and his countless successful projects or not “It’s So Easy And Other Lies” is an enjoyable film that keeps the viewers attention throughout its entire run time however, If you want a more in-depth experience I recommend picking up a copy of the book first and then check out the film.