Daisy Jones & The Six: Themes, Cinematography, & Music

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Daisy Jones & The Six is a musical drama miniseries that adapts the novel of the same name by Taylor Jenkins Reid, which fictionalizes the story of a 1970s rock band inspired by Fleetwood Mac. The cinematography captures both the gritty realism and the dreamy nostalgia of the 1970s music scene. The series explores various themes and messages that resonate with both the 1970s and the present day.

Plot Summary

The series chronicles the rise and fall of Daisy Jones & The Six, a band led by two talented and troubled singers, Daisy Jones (Riley Keough) and Billy Dunne (Sam Claflin), who have a volatile, creative and romantic relationship. The series also delves into their personal lives, their struggles with addiction, their artistic vision, and their impact on the music industry and culture.

The series is structured as a documentary-style interview with the band members and other people involved in their history, such as their producer Teddy Price (Tom Wright), their manager Rod Reyes (Timothy Olyphant), and an unnamed interviewer (Seychelle Gabriel). The series features original songs written by Sara Bareilles and performed by the cast. The series also recreates the look and feel of the 1970s music scene, with costumes, sets, props and cinematography that evoke that era.

Do Critics and Audiences like Daisy Jones & The Six?

The series has received mixed to positive reviews from critics and audiences alike. Some critics praised its performances, music, writing, direction and production values. They highlighted Keough’s spectacular portrayal of Daisy Jones as a charismatic yet vulnerable star who defies expectations and challenges conventions. They also commended Claflin’s nuanced depiction of Billy Dunne as a conflicted yet passionate artist who battles his demons and his feelings for Daisy. They also appreciated the chemistry between Keough and Claflin as well as between other cast members. They also lauded Bareilles’ songs as catchy and authentic to the period.

However, some critics also criticized its pacing, narrative structure, character development and emotional impact. They argued that the series dragged on too long for its thin plot and repeated itself too much for its documentary format. They claimed that the series failed to make viewers care about its characters or their fate beyond their superficial glamour or hedonism. They asserted that the series lacked depth or originality in its exploration of themes such as addiction, fame, creativity or love. They also complained that the series did not capture the magic or spirit of Jenkins Reid’s novel or of real-life bands such as Fleetwood Mac.

Daisy Jones & The Six’s Cinematography Captures The Gritty Realism and Dreamy Nostalgia of the 70s Music Scene

One aspect of the series that I found particularly impressive was its cinematography by Checco Varese and Jeff Cutter. The cinematography captures both the gritty realism and the dreamy nostalgia of the 1970s music scene. The camera work is dynamic and fluid, following the characters’ movements on stage and off stage with handheld shots or steady cams. The lighting is naturalistic but also stylized, using warm colors to create a contrast between day scenes (bright yellow), night scenes (dark blue), indoor scenes (soft red), and outdoor scenes (vibrant green). The framing is creative but also intimate using close-ups to reveal emotions, wide shots to show locations, angles to create tension, and transitions to link scenes.

The cinematography also enhances both aspects of this documentary-style format: realism through archival footage, interviews, and news clips; fiction through flashbacks, montages, and split screens. The cinematography creates a sense of authenticity but also artistry blending fact with fiction reality with fantasy history with imagination.

Amazing Original Music

Another aspect of the series that I found remarkable was its music by Sara Bareilles and Blake Mills. The music consists of original songs written for the show and performed by the cast, as well as covers of existing songs from the era. The music reflects both the individual styles and personalities of each character, as well as the collective sound and identity of Daisy Jones & The Six. The music expresses both the emotions and conflicts of each scene, as well as the themes and messages of each episode.

The music conveys both the authenticity and creativity of 1970s rock music, as well as the nostalgia and fantasy of modern viewers. The music showcases both the talent and passion of Bareilles Mills, as well as the cast, who sing, play instruments, act, etc.

Compelling Themes and Messages in Daisy Jones & The Six

The series explores various themes and messages that resonate with both the 1970s and the present day. Some of these themes and messages are:

  • Power and Price of Fame
  • Complexity and Diversity of Love
  • Tension and Harmony Between Art and Commerce
  • Struggle and Liberation of Women

The Power and Price of Fame

The series shows how fame can bring success, recognition, influence, and wealth, but also how it can come with pressure, scrutiny, isolation, and temptation. The series depicts how fame can affect one’s relationships, identity, health, and happiness.

The Complexity and Diversity of Love

The series portrays different kinds of love: romantic love, platonic love, familial love, self-love etc. The series illustrates how love can be inspiring, supportive, healing, and fulfilling, but also how it can be challenging, conflicting, hurtful, and destructive. The series demonstrates how love can change over time, how it can be expressed in different ways, how it can be influenced by external factors, and how it can be a choice or a fate.

The Tension and Harmony Between Art and Commerce

The series examines how art and commerce can coexist or clash in the music industry. The series reveals how art and commerce can affect one’s creativity, integrity, vision, quality etc. The series questions how art and commerce can balance or compromise one’s values goals dreams satisfaction etc.

The Struggle and Liberation of Women

The series depicts the challenges and opportunities that women faced in the 1970s music scene. The series highlights how women were often marginalized, objectified, exploited, or dismissed by men in power. The series celebrates how women were also able to assert their agency, voice talent, or leadership, in spite of sexism.

Were Daisy and Billy Supposed to End Up Together? My Take on the Ending:

My take on the show’s ending is that it was bittersweet and satisfying. I think it was bittersweet because it showed how Daisy Jones & The Six had to break up after their final concert at Soldier Field, due to Billy’s decision to prioritize his family over his music. It also showed how Daisy and Billy never got to be together as a couple, despite their undeniable love for each other. It also showed how some of the band members had to deal with the consequences of their actions, such as Eddie’s divorce, Karen’s abortion, Warren’s overdose, etc.

However, I also think it was satisfying because it showed how Daisy Jones & The Six left a lasting legacy in the music world, with their album Aurora being considered a masterpiece and a classic. It also showed how some of the band members found happiness and peace in their own ways, such as Billy’s reconciliation with Camila and his kids, Graham’s marriage with Julia, Karen’s successful solo career, etc. It also showed how Daisy and Billy finally revealed the truth about their relationship and their feelings for each other in the documentary interview.

I think the show’s ending was faithful to the novel by Taylor Jenkins Reid, but also added some twists and surprises that made it more dramatic and emotional. For example, I liked how the show revealed that Simone Jackson was actually Daisy’s half-sister, which explained their close bond and Simone’s protective attitude towards Daisy. I also liked how the show revealed that Rod Reyes was actually Daisy’s biological father, which explained his interest in her career and his guilt over abandoning her mother. I also liked how the show revealed that Teddy Price was actually behind Daisy’s overdose, which explained his resentment towards her success and his manipulation of her addiction.

Overall, I think the show’s ending was a fitting conclusion to a captivating and compelling series that showcased the highs and lows of being a rock star in the 1970s. It was a tribute to the power of music, creativity, passion, love, friendship, family, and legacy.

Saurav B.

Saurav is the main content creator at Film Finesse's blog and YouTube. He has six years of experience as a content writer, including writing screenplays for short movies and videos. He has 5 years of experience as a research manager, along with a degree in Electronics and Communications Engineering.

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