Last night I had the honor to join Geoff Edgers and a group of his friends for one of the first screenings of Do It Again, a film Geoff has made about his quest to reunite the Kinks. Do It Again was one of the very first projects on Kickstarter — our very first film project, I believe — and it has raised more than $6,000 so far (the project still has eleven days left: support it).
Do It Again is not only an excellent film (more on that in a moment), it also makes crystal clear why Geoff needed to raise the money in the first place. You see, this quest to reunite the Kinks moves a bit into the quixotic territory, with money problems, a pay cut at work (he’s a Boston Globe reporter), and a host of other sacrifices standing as substantial impediments to his dream. I’m reminded of something economics professor Tyler Cowen notes in his book Create Your Own Economy:
If you want to go on a meaningful quest, you must be lacking in something. [T]he protagonist cannot focus on everything and thus must choose and discard priorities to define a preferred quest.
As Do It Again makes clear over its 90 minutes, Geoff does far more than that. Possessing few resources beyond the worn soles of a newspaperman and an incredible tolerance for rejection, Geoff tries again and again and again to make something — anything — happen, whether it be by validating the worthiness of his mission through conversations with people like Sting, Peter Buck, Zooey Deschanel, etc (all of whom appear in the film) or even just getting his seven-year-old daughter to understand how it is that adult brothers like Kinks Ray and Dave Davies can still hate each other well into their sixties. (Musician Warren Zanes goes to Freud to explain it; Geoff did not try that tactic with his daughter.)
I’m a Kinks fan. A huge one. And a site that I cofounded helped get this made. So obviously I have dogs in this hunt. But still: this is a very, very good film. And I detest both music documentaries and personality-driven docs. Honestly. But Geoff’s film is about something deeper, about a need for accomplishment, about a life that feels unfulfilled. So he has done what we all want to do: he dropped everything and did something about it — and it’s great.
So what’s next for Geoff? Incredibly, just making the film is the first step of many. He is now working on finding a distributor, which he will need to pay the music licensing fees (there’s a lot of great music in the film, as you might have guessed) and find an audience and on and on. It’s an enormous task, and one that I hope Kickstarter can aid yet again. Because if there’s one thing Do It Again makes very, very clear, it’s that Geoff Edgers does not give up.