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The Cure: Play Out

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This 96-minute documentary chronicles a busy week in the life of black-clad alternative superstars the Cure. The band relives its early years by playing a club gig, performs at a stadium show at Wembley, tapes an acoustic set for MTV’s Unplugged, and appears on a British music-awards show.

The spooky light show and spacey atmospherics of ”A Forest” at Wembley provide a key to the Cure’s seemingly improbable megasuccess: The band is basically a new-wave version of Dark Side of the Moon-era Pink Floyd, without the detachment but with a better pop sense. While their low-key demeanor backstage is, in theory, a refreshing alternative to rock-star excess, after a while one hopes Sammy Hagar will turn up and show these guys how to party. The presentation is low tech, competent, but not terribly compelling, which puts Play Out in the endless For Fans Only file of long-form videos.

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