1:00 pm EDT, April 24, 2019

The 10 best concert films to watch after Beyonce’s ‘Homecoming’

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Now that you’ve watched (and rewatched) Beyonce’s phenomenal concert film Homecoming, check out the 10 best concert films ever next!

When Beyonce performed at Coachella last year, she turned her performance into a piece of history. The sheer exclusivity of her performance, seen only by the few lucky folks that made the trek out to the desert, only served to heighten the spectacle. Most of us us watched the performance on a grainy online stream, one that only captured a percentage of the performers’ talent and hard work. With her concert film, Beyonce has given the gift of her Coachella performance to us.

Now in high definition, clocking in at an impressive 137 minutes, Beyonce’s Homecoming has arrived. It’s a testament to Beyonce’s vision, the hard work that went into this piece of pop culture history, and a thank you to the fans. It’s everything a concert film should be. If you’ve recovered enough to watch another, check out our list of the 10 best concert films ever.

‘Stop Making Sense’ (1984)

stop making sense best concert films

Stop Making Sense follows the 1983 tour for the Talking Heads’ Speaking in Tongues album. The film is notable for its unique production and artistic direction. The movie is highly regarded as one of the best concert films ever.

Performances by: Talking Heads
Directed by: Jonathan Demme
Available with subscription: Amazon, SundanceNow
Available for rent: iTunes

‘Gimme Shelter’ (1970)

Gimme Shelter follows the final weeks of The Rolling Stone’s tour promoting their 1969 album Let It Bleed. The tour culminated with the infamous Altamont Free Concert. For a different look at The Rolling Stones, check out Martin Scorsese’s documentary Shine a Light.

Performances by: The Rolling Stones, Ike and Tina Turner, Jefferson Airplane, Flying Burrito Brothers
Directed by: Albert Maysles, Charlotte Zwerin, David Maysles
Available for rent:Amazon Prime, YouTube, Google Play

‘The Last Waltz’ (1978)

The sheer volume of artists that appear in young Martin Scorsese’s documentary on the farewell tour for The Band makes it a must see. The director brings the show to life and mixes in backstage interviews for what is easily one of the best concert films ever.

Performances by: The Band, Eric Clapton, Ringo Starr, Bob Dylan, Ronnie Wood, Muddy Waters, Neil Young, Neil Diamond, Van Morrison, Bobby Charles, Joni Mitchell, and more.
Directed by: Martin Scorsese
Available with subscription: Amazon Prime

‘Woodstock’ (1970)

Sprawling out over a whopping 185 minutes (or 224 minutes if you watch the 1994 director’s cut), Michael Wadleigh’s Woodstock documentary is fittingly grandiose for a musical festival as famous as this.

Performances by: The Who, Joe Cocker, Santana, Jimi Hendrix, Jefferson Airplane, Joan Baez, Crosby, Stills & Nash, and more.
Directed by: Michael Wadleigh
Available to rent: iTunes, YouTube

‘Sign O’ the Times’ (1987)

Prince’s concert film Sign O’ the Times (the ‘O’ is meant to be styled as a peace sign) was conceived, written and directed by Prince himself. The songs in the film are linked by a thematic narrative, a choice that when combined with Prince’s phenomenal performance, makes for one of the best concert films ever.

Performances by: Prince
Directed by: Prince
Available with subscription: Amazon Prime, Showtime Anytime
Available to rent: iTunes

‘Monterey Pop’ (1968)

D.A. Pennebaker’s Monterey Pop is frequently regarded as one of the best concert films of all time, but it’s not the only one the director made. Pennebaker’s Bob Dylan documentary Don’t Look Back is an insightful portrait of a single artist — much different than Monterey Pop which functions as a portrait of the music festival itself.

Performances by: The Mamas & the Papas, Canned Heat, Simon & Garfunkel, Huh Masekela, The Animals, Jimi Hendrix, and more.
Directed by: D.A. Pennebaker
Available to rent: iTunes

‘Dave Chappelle’s Block Party’ (2005)

Dave Chappelle’s Block Party is a unique and stunning hybrid of a film that includes both live music performances and comedy sets to create a real and true block party atmosphere. Chappelle crafts his own utopia and brings it to live for a few short minutes. It’s one of the best concert films ever.

Performances by: Dave Chappelle, Kanye West, Mos Def, Jill Scott, The Roots, Common, John Legend, The Fugees and more.
Directed by: Michael Gondry
Available with subscription: Starz, DirectTV
Available for rent: iTunes, Amazon Prime, YouTube

‘Heima’ (2007)

The name Dean DeBois may sound familiar. The Canadian director has directed all three installments in the How to Train Your Dragon franchise. However, before he signed onto those movies (and after he directed Lilo & Stitch, he brought Sigur Ros’ film Heima to life.

Performances by: Sigur Ros
Directed by: Dean DeBois
Available with subscription: Amazon Prime
Available for rent: iTunes

Pink Floyd: Live at Pompeii

Filmed over the course of four days in a deserted Roman amphitheatre, Pink Floyd recorded Live at Pompeii. The band performs a typical set yet without a live audience. It’s a fascinating choice, a novelty that helps push it onto this list. It may not be as easy to find, but there are dozens of clips floating around online.

Performances by: Pink Floyd
Directed by: Adrian Maben
Available for purchase: Amazon

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