Big Movie Zone Blog Press Releases Teacher's Guides Community
Features and Reviews

BMZ Review: Rolling Stones at the Max
By Ross Anthony


1990 Tour (Large Format)
Written by: Ross Anthony
Source: Ross Anthony's Hollywood Report Card
Date: May 9, 2005


Category: Reviews

I'd recently been talking with friends about having missed this IMAX® film. What luck, a screening popped up in my area and I seized the opportunity. The film proved well worth my interest, despite the fact that I am not a devoted Stones fan. Still, like many many people, I've enjoyed several of their hits when they play on the radio.

Though big screen IMAX, this is still a full-length feature presentation -- something like an hour and a half. There's even an intermission for reel changes.

Opening with the band back stage, all smiles and readying for the show, the Stones take the walk out to their audience. Rather than review each song, here is an overview of my impression. The most striking element is Keith Richards. While Mick is bouncing around the stage like a kid who forgot to take his ritalin, Keith is blissfully picking out his spiritual place. Some of his leads are sweet, some don't make any sense at all, but all the while that man is exactly where he wants to be. He's swimming in a self-peace. There's a simple joy on his face. He's like the extreme surfers or skiers in other IMAX films, it's just that his guitar is his surfboard. It's a joy to watch him be so happy, twisting around like a ballet student in love.

Technically, this is shot very well. A rich mix of Camera angles brings you into this concert. Honestly, I'd much rather watch concerts this way than actually be there. It's a shame the public outcry for IMAX concerts isn't strong enough to make such ventures more profitable. In fact, I'm quite happy for theaters these days that have LIVE broadcast capability, but the public doesn't seem to understand the appeal because even the theaters with these capabilities aren't putting them to good use.

Besides a cool filming of the huge video screen that goes long, the weakest link in this picture is the sound separation. While the actual mix is fine, the distribution of various instruments through the awesome multi-channel IMAX sound system is lacking. Still, it's loud and listenable.

Shot over five nights in July and August 1990 during the final leg of the Steel Wheels/Urban Jungle Tour.

Rolling Stones At the Max. Copyright © 1990.
Starring the Rolling Stones.
Director/Cinematographer David Douglas.
Produced by the BCL group.

Grade..........................A (3.5/4)

Copyright © 1998-2004. Ross Anthony, currently based in Los Angeles, has scripted and shot documentaries, music videos, and shorts in 35 countries across North America, Europe, Africa and Asia. For more reviews visit: For Adult & Teen Novels written by Ross Anthony visit:

Movie Reviews by Ross Anthony

National Parks Adventure
Journey to Space
Wild Africa
Space Next
Island of Lemurs: Madagascar
Flight of the Butterflies
To The Arctic 3D
Tornado Alley
Born to Be Wild
Sea Rex 3D: Journey to a Prehistoric World
Hubble 3D
Resident Evil: Afterlife: An IMAX 3D Experience
The Twilight Saga: Eclipse: The IMAX Experience
Shrek Forever After: An IMAX 3D Experience
Iron Man 2: The IMAX Experience
The Wildest Dream: Conquest of Everest
Quantum Quest: A Cassini Space Odyssey
The Ultimate Wave Tahiti 3D
Arabia 3D
Molecules to the MAX!
Avatar: An IMAX 3D Experience
Van Gogh: Brush With Genius
Journey to Mecca: In the Footsteps of Ibn Battuta
Mysteries of the Great Lakes
The Dark Knight: The IMAX Experience
Kung Fu Panda: The IMAX Experience
Shine a Light: The IMAX Experience
Beowulf: An IMAX 3D Experience
Dinosaurs Alive! (3D/2D)
The Alps
Mummies: Secrets of the Pharaohs
Lions 3D: Roar of the Kalahari
Sea Monsters: A Prehistoric Adventure (3D/2D)
Greece: Secrets of the Past
Roving Mars
Wired to Win: Surviving the Tour de France
Wild Safari 3D: A South African Adventure
Mystery of the Nile
Mystic India
Aliens of the Deep (3D)
Grand Canyon: The Hidden Secrets
Rolling Stones at the Max
Sharks 3D
Fighter Pilot: Operation Red Flag
The Polar Express: An IMAX 3D Experience
Roar: Lions of the Kalahari
Forces of Nature
Adventures in Animation (3D)
NASCAR: The IMAX Experience (3D/2D)
The Young Black Stallion
To Fly!
Silent Sky
Volcanoes of the Deep Sea
Texas: The Big Picture
Pulse: A Stomp Odyssey
Ocean Wonderland (3D)
India: Kingdom of the Tiger
Straight Up!: Helicopters in Action
Coral Reef Adventure
Bugs! (3D/2D)
Adrenaline Rush: The Science of Risk
Ghosts of the Abyss (3D)
The Lion King (IMAX/Giant Screen/Large Format Edition)
Jane Goodall's Wild Chimpanzees
Treasure Planet (IMAX/Giant Screen/Large Format Edition)
Star Wars Ep. II, Attack of the Clones: The IMAX Experience
Santa vs. the Snowman (3D/2D)
Alaska: Spirit of the Wild
Africa: The Serengeti
Horses: The Story of Equus
Kilimanjaro: To the Roof of Africa
Australia: Land Beyond Time
Ultimate X
Space Station 3D
Lewis & Clark: Great Journey West
Beauty and the Beast: Special Edition
The Human Body
Blue Planet
China: The Panda Adventure
Ocean Oasis
Lost Worlds: Life in the Balance
Ocean Men: Extreme Dive
Majestic White Horses
Amazing Journeys
Ski to the Max
Shackleton's Antarctic Adventure
NSync: Bigger Than Live
Super Speedway
Journey into Amazing Caves
ALL ACCESS: Front row, Backstage, LIVE!
Haunted Castle 3D
T-Rex: Back to the Cretaceous (3D)
Wildfire: Feel the Heat
Encounter in the Third Dimension 3D
Mysteries of Egypt
Siegfried & Roy: The Magic Box (3D)
Cirque du Soleil: Journey of Man (3D)
Michael Jordan to the Max
Cyberworld (3D)
Adventures in Wild California

Articles Archive: Newest to Oldest

Reviews Archive: Newest to Oldest