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David Crosby is the subject of a new documentary by A.J. Eaton.

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  • David Crosby: Remember My Name
  • Directed by A.J. Eaton
  • Classification: 14A
  • 95 minutes

rating

Apparently Dennis Hopper’s character in Easy Rider was at least partly inspired by sixties rock star David Crosby.

But Crosby, as we learn in the fascinating documentary David Crosby: Remember My Name, is no easy rider. He’s no easy anything. What he is is stunningly self-aware, relentlessly candid and highly interested in the subject at hand, which is himself.

Your guide to this weekend’s new films, including the outrageous Hobbs & Shaw and the intense David Crosby doc

As a new and intense documentary reveals, David Crosby keeps on keepin’ on

Rock-journalist-turned-filmmaker Cameron Crowe does the interviewing, but he barely needs to be there. Crosby never shuts up and you don’t want him to. Seventy-seven years old and on his second liver, he’s running out of time: “I’m afraid of dying, and I’m close." He says he hurt people, that he was a bad companion, that he got his girlfriends hooked on the same drugs to which he was addicted. An abrasive weirdo and committed troublemaker, the harmony-singing musician is loathed by some of his former bandmates in the Byrds and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young.

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First-time filmmaker A.J. Eaton concocts a narrative involving Crosby’s tearful wife, who worries when her heart-attack-waiting-to-happen husband goes on tour that she’ll never see him again. It feels like jive; why doesn’t she just go on tour with him? Other than that, there’s nothing phony here – though, at the end of the film, Crosby makes an impish remark on the subject of truth that the devil himself would admire. But that’s just the Croz at work.

Remember his name? The dude is unforgettable, now more than ever thanks to this film’s excellent, incandescent illumination.

David Crosby: Remember My Name opens at Toronto’s Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema on Aug. 2; Vancouver and Montreal, Aug. 9.

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