I Am Trying to Break Your Heart: A Film About Wilco (2003)


In the fall of 2000, Wilco entered the studio to record their highly anticipated fourth album. Building on three critically acclaimed albums and a reputation for phenomenal live shows, the band seemed posed to cement its reputation as one of the great American rock groups. So how is it that one year later, with completed record in hand, the band found itself rejected by its corporate record label and missing two of its original members? First-time filmmaker and award-winning photographer Sam Jones was on-hand, chronicling this turbulent chapter in Wilco's history as it unfolded. The recording process is always rife with tension. That's to be expected, especially when the band is as ambitious as Wilco. The real surprise comes when the band delivers the final album to Reprise and all they get in response is two weeks of ominous silence. Soon, contracts are being broken and partnerships are being severed as Jones discovers he has a far more tumultuous tale to tell than he originally envisioned. Throughout the film, Jones tempers the backstage dramas and unfathomable corporate shenanigans with inspired live performances, as frontman Jeff Tweedy and company perform songs from the beleaguered "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" album, recently released and already considered a modern classic. Shot in luminous black and white, I Am Trying To Break Your Heart is a riveting portrait of a band making the best music of its career.

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