Greetings From Tim Buckley is not a film for folks with a passing interest in the work of the titular singer-songwriter and his son Jeff. This is hagiography in the form of a biopic, intended to soothe the tender hearts of those who’ve obsessed over the younger Buckley's music ever since his untimely death in 1997. Because the Jeff Buckley depicted on screen is not the self-aware and, some would say, calculating figure that rose to acclaim via his sole studio album, 1994's Grace. As portrayed by Gossip Girl pretty boy Penn Badgley, this Jeff is a tender and twitchy soul, adorably wooing a girl in New York as he confronts his past in the form of a 1991 concert honoring his father's music. To aid in Badgley's brooding are flashbacks of the elder Buckley enjoying success as a musician in the ’60s and abandoning his family for the sake of his career ("My wife doesn't like my music," he repeats in one scene). The apparent intention is to offer a parallel to Jeff's own selfish acts, but that never comes to light. In its place is a manic pixie tortured artist edging ever closer to his eventual canonization.
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- Release Date: Tuesday, May 21, 2013
- Critic's Score: D
- Watch the trailer