Taking-Woodstock-2Flowers in the hair, hippies running naked, VW buses and hash brownies… are all to be found in this Ang Lee movie, reminiscent of the ’69 summer of love. “Perspective shuts out the universe, it keeps the love out”, as one the characters states.

The film presents two stories that mingle on the way: Elliot’s road to freedom and the psychedelic journey of the hippie crowd during the first Woodstock festival.

The plot follows the true story of Elliot Tiber (Demetri Martin), an aspiring Greenwich Village interior designer whose parents own a small shabby motel. In order to help his family, Elliot plans to hold a small musical festival, and has, for $1, obtained a permit from the town’s chamber of commerce (of which he is also the president). When he hears that the organizers of the Woodstock Festival face opposition against the originally planned location, he offers his permit and the motel accommodations to the organizer. A neighbor provides his nearby farm land; first they agree on a fee of $5,000, but after realizing how many people will come, he demaTaking_Woodstock-concertnds $75,000, which the organizers reluctantly accept.

When Elliot announces during the press conference that the concerts are free for everyone, thousand of hippies arrive in the village. They don’t have enough room to camp or any chance to see the bands on the stage, but they still enjoy every moment of the festival. Waves of freedom and peace embrace the whole valley.

Elliot has his own initiatory experiences. He meets a hippie couple who invite him to join them on an LSD trip in their VW Bus. He gradually melts into a psychedelic state of serine tranquility. Elliot also struggles with hiding his homosexuality from his family, but he connects romantically with one of the event organizers staying at the motelScene-from-Taking-Woodsto-3.

After 3 days of love, peace and music, everyone heads home and Elliot decides to move to California, to strike out on his own, as his father encourages him.

Additional info from Wikipedia

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