SXSW Review: Downloaded


Director:Alex Winter


Running Time:106 Minutes


I think we can all remember when we first got onto Napster or maybe even one of its spin-offs like LimeWire; I do, and the excitement of having unbelievable access to free music changed my life and my perception of music forever. Downloaded is a well done documentary about the guys that made it all possible and changed the music industry forever.

The film starts by introducing us to Shawn Fanning, a teenage hacker and programmer, who created the code that would become the basis for all peer-to-peer file sharing. The film goes on to discuss how Shawn met and became friends with Sean Parker, who was the one who launched Napster. The rest is pretty much history; Downloaded takes you into the relationships these teens formed and the battles they had to deal with later from the music industry.

As an overall documentary, Downloaded is pretty much an average film. There are a lot of cuts from old interviews and some new ones that help create the story. I think what will keep people interested is the content of the movie itself. Everyone downloads music somehow, and this movie tells you about the kids who figured out how to do it.

It's hard for me to say that you will know when the DVD will come out or even to say if or even when this might hit your local theater, but if you see this movie on Netflix instant queue and have an interest in the subject, I think you will enjoy this documentary. 


About Micael Mirza


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