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BMZ Review: Pulse: A Stomp Odyssey
By Paula Tagle


Pulse: A Stomp Odyssey
Written by: Paula Tagle
Source: Big Movie Zone
Date: March 12, 2004


Category: Reviews

From the percussion-based performers of STOMP comes Pulse: a STOMP Odyssey, a  compelling large format film exploring rhythm, performance and, dare I say it, unity.  Spanning the globe, Pulse records the musical productions of a variety of cultures from the traditional to the eccentric.

The film opens with a recognizable image of New York City apartments.  Here, the performers of STOMP set the tone of the film: storytelling through rhythm and music.  From New York, we travel to less familiar but more captivating locales showcasing a particular culture's musical language.  We encounter master drummers of Guinea, Moremogolo Dancers of South Africa, Japan's Kodo drummers and even England's Winchester Cathedral Bellringers.  Each differ in their expression of rhythm, yet all are enthralling in their declaration of music.

In Thrissur, India, we find ourselves in the midst of an elaborate celebration: a parade of elephants and two traditional bands culminating in a roaring musical showdown.  The film captures other equally gripping images, including the drumming groups of Brazil performing along a poverty-stricken neighborhood, yet still managing to express celebration and jubilance.

Forsaking narration and dialogue altogether, Pulse's reliance on beats and rhythm make for an even stronger film and reinforce the idea of the universality of music.  In addition, the film advantageously utilizes the best of large format cinema enveloping the audience both in unique visuals and overwhelming sound.

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