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  • A black and white image of Gordon Lightfoot as a younger man, next to a recent photograph of him.

GORDON LIGHTFOOT: IF YOU COULD READ MY MIND

Coming Soon to Virtual Cinema

Available for rental starting Wednesday, July 29

DIRECTED BY JOAN TOSONI AND MARTHA KEHOE

“I hate that fuckin’ song,” intones Gordon Lightfoot, watching a video of his beatific pop music-god self from the ‘60s, cynically singing “That’s what you get for lovin’ me.” At 80, the legendary Canadian musician/poet laureate is a craggy, wizened incarnation of his former self -- today, a still-charismatic, honest, funny, and self-effacing artist. Emerging from Toronto’s Yorkville (the coffeehouse scene that also birthed Neil Young and Joni Mitchell), Lightfoot gained fame with a string of beguiling ballads. “Early Morning Rain” was covered by everyone from Peter, Paul and Mary to Bob Dylan and Elvis. “If You Could Read My Mind” went Gold in 1971, and “Carefree Highway,” “Beautiful,” and “Sundown” followed, cementing his reputation. “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald,” his haunting, 6-minute song about the Lake Superior shipwreck, was an unlikely chart-topping hit. With more than a few regrets (3 marriages, 6 children), Lightfoot is still a captivating storyteller, with or without guitar in hand, a man who has bridged the genres of country, folk, and pop to become a fuller, more expansive human being.

Presented with support from the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation Fund.

CANADA   2019   90 MINS.   GREENWICH ENTERTAINMENT

Reviews

“Warm and charming. Filled with rich archival footage. The array of artists from across time and geography who have covered Lightfoot’s work is staggering, and speaks to his talents as a top-tier songwriter. His career touches all the great songwriters from the era - Joni Mitchell, Johnny Cash, and even the mutual appreciation society he forms with Bob Dylan. Lightfoot himself (is) a charming, yet humble figure who seems to appreciate his continued success without really buying into his own legend.”
– Ian Gormely, Exclaim

“While the film could easily indulge in baby boomer nostalgia, Lightfoot doesn’t let it. Now 80, he is gregarious and reflective, grateful for his accomplishments, without overlooking his faults. It’s rare that Lightfoot provides this type of access, and it gives writer/directors Martha Kehoe and Joan Tesoni a lot of rich material to work with. It’s Lightfoot who provides the most insight.”
– Richard Trapunski, NOW Toronto