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David Foster: Off the Record profiles the Grammy Award–winning composer and producer.

Melbar Entertainment

  • David Foster: Off the Record
  • Directed by Barry Avrich
  • Classification PG
  • 98 minutes

rating

In Barry Avrich’s straightforward documentary on David Foster, the usual complaint about the famed Canadian record producer’s slick, flawless sound is brought up. “Not enough grit,” one of the parade of interviewees says.

One might say the same about an informative character study that offers little music-biz dirt or raw candidness for a film with “Off the Record” in its title. Mostly we get A-list singers such as Barbra Streisand and Céline Dion singing the 69-year-old Foster’s praises – pitch perfect, as if the obsessive taskmaster would have it any other way.

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Despite the film’s laudatory tone, a portrait of Foster is competently painted by the veteran documentarian Avrich. The five-time husband and I Will Always Love You hitmaker was brash and cocky in the studio and a “runner” when marital relationships went bad. Foster admits to being arrogant, and while not exactly remorseful, he does allow that “I don’t think I particularly would have liked the young David Foster.”

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As for the current David Foster, director Avrich steps aside and lets the people who watch this film decide whether they like him or not.

David Foster: Off the Record is now playing in select Cineplex theatres.

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