Levon Helm in Jacob Hatley's 'Ain't in It For My Health'
For being such an integral part of rock history, Levon Helm -- the heart and drumbeat of the Band -- never really got enough credit, at least not as far as he was concerned. But now, with the opening of "Ain't in It for My Health," at least Helm will be able to tell his own story, albeit posthumously.
The fly-on-the-wall documentary, shot by director Jacob Hatley, situates the viewer shotgun alongside Helm in 2007, as the famously loquacious Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee embarks on a five-week, five-nights-a-week tour for his Grammy-winning comeback album "Dirt Farmer." Soon Helm learns that his failing health won't be able to accommodate such a demanding schedule, even if his wallet needs it to.
Over the course of more than two years of shooting, Hatley's subtle camera catches all the joy, pain, and nuances of one of rock's most interesting and talented figures. The camera never shies away -- from the doctor's office to the tour bus to the Midnight Ramble live sessions that Helm conducted in his barn in Woodstock, New York, the same barn where Hatley slept most of the time.
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