Video Review: Mr. Big, "Lean Into It"

There's a special message on this video from Pat Torpey (drums): "When you're in the tub - don't use a hairdryer. Cos' if you do, there's gonna be some sparks flying, I can tell ya!"

What can I say? This is more than just a collection of live, studio, and interview footage. The viewer is given lifesaving hints into the bargain!

One of the most appealing aspects of this video is the emergence of the individual characters that combine to create MR. BIG. During the 60 minutes of running time the quartet talk about their personal life histories, the origin of the band, their song and writing technique, life on the road, and, amongst other things, the strange practicalities of having a fringed guitarist.

Humour abounds in a natural unassuming manner that will draw fans like magnets.

From a critical stance, however, the composition of Lean Into It is disjointed, too often incomprehensible and - after two viewings - a definite candidate for the fast forward button. Both the intro and the outro snippets are untidy and largely unintelligible, as are most of the sections filmed over dinner at Barneys Beanery. Also, allowing the interview footage to flit from one location to the another is erratic and confusing.

My personal enjoyment is rooted firmly in the musical elements, with the combination of live, promotional, and recording-studio-home-movie performances revealing why MR. BIG are so popular. Addicted To That Rush, Voodoo Kiss, Drill Song, To Be With You, and the official video for Green Tinted Sixties Mind (around which much of the action is based) are all worth watching time after time. But unless you breathe, eat, and sleep Mr. BIG, wait until they release a concert video.

Lyn Guy
Riff Raff
August 1991

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