The Beach Boys are one of the most famous bands of all time. However, many people only know their music and nothing about their personal struggles they went through in creating their music.
“Love & Mercy” looks at possibly the most tragic story of The Beach Boys, the leader Brian Wilson and his struggles with mental illness and substance abuse.
The Beach Boys were one of the most popular bands of the 60's, a rock group known for their songs about beach life and the feelings of summer.
For those who were unaware of Brian Wilson’s struggles the contents of “Love & Mercy” may come as a shock. Anybody who knows about what happened to Brian Wilson can see how this movie captures exactly what happened and what Wilson was feeling.
The most striking thing about “Love & Mercy” is the seamless transitions from looking at Wilson just as he begins to struggle and looking at his life as he escapes Eugene Landy. By switching back and forth between the two perspectives a perfect picture of what happened to Brian Wilson is created. By witnessing his struggles, both when he is younger and still involved with The Beach Boys and when he is older and finding his path away from all of his struggles with substance abuse and Eugene Landy, you gain a complete understanding of everything that happened.
“Love & Mercy” is intense and thought-provoking throughout. The more it is revealed what was really happening, the more you begin to feel for each person, either positively or negatively. Going into “Love & Mercy” the most concerning issue would be how they would handle mental illness, as many Hollywood movies create negative and harmful ideas about people who struggle with mental illness. However, “Love & Mercy” does a fantastic job of creating a picture of how difficult mental illness is without reflecting negatively upon anyone struggling with it. In this way, Brian Wilson’s story is told, but he is at no point disrespected.
The only thing not done exquisitely is the ending, which is a bit of a let-down. With such an intense movie usually an intense ending would be expected, but the ending of “Love & Mercy” is more of a fade to black than anything. The last scene of the movie almost feels unnecessary, especially considering how many more important things the movie could have ended on.
Overall, “Love & Mercy” is a must-see for any Beach Boys fan. It is extremely interesting to see what happened brought to life in such a powerful way. For those who may not know The Beach Boys as well this movie will give you a deeper understanding of the band and what really happens when musicians leave the stage.