Ain't in It for My Health: A Film About Levon Helm

Ain't in It for My Health: A Film About Levon Helm (Kino Lorber)

Rock & Roll DVDs

Ain't in It for My Health: A Film About Levon Helm

(Kino Lorber)

Early in Jacob Hatley's 2010 documentary of Levon Helm, the singing, drumming backbone of the Band shuffles uneasily through his Woodstock farmhouse, home from tour for a couple days, tired and hurting. The image is striking in the revelation of Helm's gaunt, cancer-stricken body, legs thin, head bowed. Hatley doesn't shy away from following Helm into the hospitals, the moments fighting to recover his voice and facing his own mortality and bills, yet that's not the portrait the director ultimately leaves us with. Released now on DVD, Ain't in It for My Health intimately chronicle's Helm's brief but brilliant resurgence following 2007 LP Dirt Farmer, touching sparingly on Band history, but only enough to elucidate the conflicted pride and bitterness the subject holds for his legacy. Harrowing and heartfelt, oscillating between Helm's harsh coughs and brilliant smile, the film concludes with him eschewing Grammy recognition for another "Midnight Ramble," surrounded by family and friends instead to celebrate the birth of his grandson.

READ MORE
More Levon Helm
ACL Music Fest Saturday Reviews
Levon Helm

Margaret Moser, Oct. 2, 2009

Phases & Stages
Levon Helm
Dirt Farmer (Record Review)

Doug Freeman, Dec. 28, 2007

More Music Reviews
Too Late to Stop Now
Rolling Stones
Rolling Stones in Mono (Record Review)

Tim Stegall, Dec. 16, 2016

Texas Platters
Walter Daniels
"Almost Got Hit by a Truck" b/w "My Mind Got Bad", "Voodoo Working" and "Stimulant" b/w "I Get Off on It", "Graveyard Shift" b/w "They Can Only Fill One Grave" (Record Review)

Tim Stegall, Dec. 2, 2016

More by Doug Freeman
Free Week Live Shots
Digital Wild, A. Sinclair, Darkbird
Empire Control Room, Jan. 6

Jan. 13, 2017

Free Week Live Shots
Leopold & His Fiction, Major Major Major, Patch
Spider House Ballroom, Jan. 7

Jan. 13, 2017

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Levon Helm

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

Updates for SXSW 2017

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)