Killing Bono

(2011)

Genres: Comedy

Review: Killing Bono

Transcript for Review: Killing Bono

CHRISTY:
Alright, next up is "Killing Bono," a comedy that tells the story of the birth of U2, as well as another Irish rock band that languished in their shadow. Ben Barnes stars as Neil McCormick, the music critic whose memoir inspired the film. Neil and his brother, Ivan, grew up with Bono and the lads playing music in the '70s and dreaming of rock stardom.

But as U2 gets bigger and bigger, Neil finds he must align himself with some shady figures just to get his group a gig here and there and maybe even a record contract.
 
Director Nick Hamm has a lot of fun with the bad '80s clothes, and all the coke and eyeliner of the decade. But in the end, Neil comes off as so selfish and so perpetually whiny and miserable, you kinda want to see U2 trounce them. Thumbs down from me.
 
IGNATIY:
Thumbs down from me as well.  I mean this reverse Forest Gump kind of structure…
 
CHRISTY:  
That is an excellent analogy.
 
IGNATIY:
Yeah, I mean that is essentially what it is.  You know they keep, because it’s not just U2, they you know intersect with all kinds of other things and uh each time they have absolutely terrible luck. It could have been quite funny.  It could have worked.
 
CHRISTY:
It’s not bad luck though.  Its that this one guy is so selfish and makes all these bad choices, he ruins it for everybody else.  
 
IGNATIY:
 It’s true, but then the film kind of…it tries to have it both ways.  It tries to make him a sympathetic character, but it doesn’t work because it has already worked so hard to make him unlikable.  
 
CHRISTY: Yeah.
 
IGNATIY:
And that’s the problem.  This story at the center, it isn’t compelling.
 
CHRISTY:
There’s nowhere to go with it.  They play some music, something bad happens, they play some more music, something bad happens again.
 
IGNATIY:
And a lot of, a lot of rock movie clichés just get trotted out.