Review: Avicii: True Stories (2017)

Avicii: True Stories (2017)

Directed by: Levan Tsikurishvili | 97 minutes | documentary | Starring: Avicii, David Guetta, Tiësto, Wyclef Jean, Madonna, Chris Martin, Barack Obama, Salem Al Fakir, Johan Bjerkelund, Aloe Blacc, Fredrick Boberg, Sandro Cavazza, Per Dickson, Alex Ebert, Michael Einziger, Carl Falk, Carl Fohlin Sebastian Furrer, Filip Holm, Otto Knows, Dhani Lennevald, Laidback Luke, Magnus Lygdback, Vincent Pontare, Ash Pournouri, Nile Rodgers, Per Sundlin, Car Vernersson, Lucas von Bahder, Jesse Waits

The documentary ‘Avicii: True Stories’ tells the deeply disturbing story of DJ and music producer Tim Bergling, who broke through worldwide at a young age under the stage name Avicii. At the beginning of the documentary, just before his career takes off, the Swedish teenager prefers to sit in his room with his friends at home behind the computer to make new songs and dreams of world fame. At the end of the documentary, Tim finds himself defeated and alone on an island, having given up his world stage for peace and privacy.

When the DJ breaks through to the general public with the monster hit Levels, the madness begins. His manager Arash even says (the documentary is less than 15 minutes into the film) “Tim is going to die,” the interviews, radio appearances and shows that await him will be exhausting. At the time, the filmmakers had no idea how the young DJ’s life would tragically end within six months of ‘Avicii: True Stories’ being released. How cruel can it be.

The candid documentary shows Tim trying to keep up with his life as an artist Avicii, but the cutthroat schedule (813 shows in eight years) and unhealthy lifestyle quickly take its toll. Tim struggles with physical complaints and ends up in hospital a number of times, but also battles depression and anxiety. Unfortunately, no one in his management or family realizes how hard it is for him, even though he mentions this several times. Eventually it becomes too much for him and Tim decides to put an end to the tours and performances for good. Avicii says goodbye to his fans via an emotional Facebook message. In 2016 he does a few last shows, but then he takes early retirement.

The last five minutes of ‘Avicii: True Stories’ are hopeful and soothing. We only see Tim on the beach of Madagascar where he can finally come to himself. Laughing on a beach chair, guitar in hand and the wind in his hair; you give him this time to focus on his own happiness. Nina Simone’s “Feeling Good” accompanies the peaceful images and when the following text comes into the picture “in December 2016, Tim decides to leave his management and focus on making music, for himself and with other artists,” it seems okay. come with Avicii. To think they found him lifeless in the same spot four months later is heartbreaking.

‘Avicii: True Stories’ is a special insight into the life of a special young artist. His death gives an extra morbid layer to the documentary, because for an hour and a half you wonder why no one intervenes and how it could have come to this terrible end.

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