There are very few modern musicians whose life is as well documented as Bob Dylan. There are libraries filled with biographies on the man and his own memoir is split into three separate planned books (Volume One has already been released); the big screen movie of his life I’m Not There, featured everyone from Christian Bale to Cate Blanchett playing the troubadour; and there have been countless concert films and documentaries as well centered around the man. So why one more doc on the already well-documented singer? Because Bob Dylan 1966-1978: After the Crash happens to be a pretty damn interesting one.
Originally released in 2006, this updated version includes a second CD containing the Weberman Tapes, close to an hour of rare audio recordings of the singer confronting his stalker and critic A.J. Weberman who would rifle through Dylan’s garbage – a fact he admits almost with glee in an interview in the After the Crash doc. How his obnoxious snooping would get Dylan to start writing protest songs again (Weberman’s goal) is never full explained in the film.
The movie picks up in the strange 12-year period in Dylan’s career immediately after he gets injured in a motorcycle crash, escapes into seclusion, goes country, becomes born-again and has an identity crises of sorts. Though there is no direct interview of Dylan in this film, those interviewed include critics, musicians who played alongside him at this time and, of course, Weberman.
Covering such a myriad of topics, After the Crash could have easily turned into a crammed together mishmash of disparate topics and points of view, but thankfully that’s not the case. It flows smoothly and ends up being one of the most interesting, and objective, looks at the singer’s career in years.
Bob Dylan 1966-1978 After the Crash DVD Review