Let’s Get Lost

Director: Bruce Weber

Institute History

  • 1989 Sundance Film Festival


Bruce Weber’s dark and shimmering valentine to the great jazz trumpet player Chet Baker, Let’s Get Lost is a bravura portrait of a lost man who made the most beautiful music. Impressionistic and inflected by the cinematic equivalents of ostinato, full of chiaroscuro riffs and lilting shadows, the film is more a documentary which circles around its subject, rather than actually being about him. Baker’s life remains no less mysterious than his fatal fall from an Amsterdam hotel window in May, 1988: women floated around him: women floated around him ; drugs poured into him; and thugs robbed him of his art when they knocked out his front teeth. Baker’s biography ultimately resists interpretation. To those who tried to know him intimately, he was trouble; to his fans, he was a natural musician with a mellifluous voice.

In 1987, Weber, whose favorite record was Baker’s 1950s album, “Let’s Get Lost,” hung out with the musician, then fifty-seven, who was chiseled and worn but still playing dates in the U. S. and Europe. Before Baker’s death and with his permission, Weber conducted a series of unorthodox interviews in Stillwater, Oklahoma with Baker’s mother, ex-wife, and children; he also spoke with Baker’s ex-lovers and professional colleagues, people like Dick Block, who discovered Baker, and photographer William Claxton, who captured his aura as a sex symbol. Intercutting these sequences with scenes of Baker in performance throughout his career, Weber creates a tracery of indomitable solitude.

— Larry Kardish

Screening Details

As you use our Online Archives, please understand that the information presented from Festivals, Labs, and other activities is taken directly from official publications from each year. While this information is limited and doesn't necessarily represent the full list of participants (e.g. actors and crew), it is the list given to us by the main film/play/project contact at the time, based on the space restrictions of our publications. Each entry in the Online Archives is meant as a historical record of a particular film, play, or project at the time of its involvement with Sundance Institute. For this reason, we can only amend an entry if a name is misspelled, or if the entry does not correctly reflect the original publication. If you have questions or comments, please email [email protected]