The Soul of a Man

With THE SOUL OF A MAN, Wim Wenders achieved a poetic homage to the music that shaped his life: The Blues. Wenders tells the life story of three of his Blues heroes: Skip James, J.B. Lenoir and Blind Wille Johnson, partly as a historical investigation, partly as a fictional staging. The music of these unfortunately forgotten great masters of the Blues is revived before our eyes through an extended fictional film sequence, rare archival footage, present-day documentary scenes and covers of their songs by musicians like Bonnie Raitt, Lucinda Williams, Beck, Lou Reed, Eagle Eye Cherry, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Cassandra Wilson, Los Lobos, T Bone Burnett and other. “These songs meant the world to me” Wenders recounts. “I sensed there was more truth in them than in every book or every film one can read or see about America. I tried to tell a story about what touched me so deeply about these songs and these three unique voices of the Blues, rather than doing it with a documentary style.”

THE SOUL OF A MAN is part of a series of seven films by seven directors about THE BLUES. Made under the direction of Executive Producer Martin Scorsese, every one of these films is approaching the essence of the Blues in its own way and also investigates how deeply this music influenced people all over the world.


Germany / USA 2002
Length: 103 min, 2833 m
Format: 35mm, color and black and white; 1:1,66; Dolby SRD
Original Language: English

Cast and crew

Production: Reverse Angle Pictures GmbH (Berlin), Vulcan Productions (Seattle) Director: Wim Wenders Producer: Alex Gibney, Margaret Bodde Screenplay: Wim Wenders Director of Photography: Lisa Rinzler Editor: Mathilde Bonnefoy Cast: Chris Thomas King, Keith Brown, Steve Seaberg, Ronnog Seaberg, Dick Waterman, J.B. Lenoir, Skip James

Music Performance: David Barnes, Beck, T Bone Burnett, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds, Shemekia Copeland, E, Eagle Eye Cherry, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Garland Jeffreys, Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Los Lobos, Bonnie Raitt, Cassandra Wilson, Lou Reed, Vernon Reid, Marc Ribot, Lucinda Williams, John Mayall, James Blood Ulmer, Keith Brown Music: Skip James, J.B. Lenoir, Blind Willie Johnson Narrator: Laurence Fishburne Presented by: Martin Scorsese Camera Operator: Andreas Giesecke Assistant Camera: Damion Lawyer Light: Tristan G. Sheridan, Paul Bateman, Fritz Marx, Bill Newell Set Builder: Allen Harrison, Tom Lembke, Keith Lowe, Rob McKenna, Kevin McMorrow Excecutive Producer: Martin Scorsese, Ulrich Felsberg, Peter Schwartzkopff, Paul G. Allen, Jody Patton Music Producer: Steve Jordan Music Recording: Robbie Adams, Danetracks, Steve Durkee, John Harris, Max Feldman Music-Mix: Niko Bolas , Mike Filosa, Donald Thomas Assistant Editor: Nina Caspers, Nicolas Brozeix Set Design: Liba Daniels Primary Distribution: Reverse Angle Verleih GmbH (Berlin) First Release (DE): 06.05.2004 World Sales: HanWay Films

Blu-ray & DVD

Language: English (5.1 Dolby Digital)
Format: 1.78:1

Press Sheet (PDF)

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