|The Velvet Underground|
|Directed by||Todd Haynes|
|Distributed by||Apple TV+|
The Velvet Underground is a 2021 American documentary film directed and produced by Todd Haynes that chronicles the life and times of the rock band the Velvet Underground.
It had its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival on July 7, 2021. It was released on October 15, 2021, by Apple TV+, to critical acclaim.
The Velvet Underground was an influential band that arose from the music, art, and film avant-gardes of early-1960s New York City. Although not a commercial success at the time, it had a significant impact on underground, experimental, and alternative music and the development of punk and new wave music. Its core members were Lou Reed, Sterling Morrison, John Cale, Doug Yule and Maureen Tucker. Artist Andy Warhol managed and promoted the band—convincing them to add German singer and model Nico to their line-up. Haynes's film examines the cultural milieu of the band and its musical and cinematic influences. It tracks the band's history from formation to the break-up of its original line-up in the early 1970s. Interviews with surviving band members Cale and Tucker and musicians the band influenced are woven with archival music and film material.
In August 2017, Todd Haynes was hired to direct and produce a documentary film about the Velvet Underground. Haynes received cooperation of the surviving members of the band including founding members John Cale and Maureen Tucker. Interviews for the film were shot in 2018. Doug Yule, who replaced Cale in the band in 1968, appears in voiceover but was not filmed.
In October 2020, Apple TV+ acquired distribution rights to the film. It had its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival on July 7, 2021. It was released theatrically and on Apple TV+ on October 15, 2021., and in December 2022 it was released on DVD and Blu-ray by The Criterion Collection.
On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 98% based on 127 reviews, with an average rating of 8.10/10. The critical consensus states: "The Velvet Underground takes a fittingly idiosyncratic approach to delivering a rock documentary that captures the band as well as its era." On Metacritic, the film has a weighted score of 87 out of 100 based on 31 critics, indicating "universal acclaim".
Some critics felt the documentary glossed over the band's 1969 self-titled album and contributions by Yule.
|Award||Date of ceremony||Category||Recipient(s)||Result||Ref.|
|ACE Eddie Awards||March 5, 2022||Best Edited Documentary (Feature)||Affonso Gonçalves and Adam Kurnitz||Nominated|||
|Austin Film Critics Association Awards||January 11, 2022||Best Documentary||The Velvet Underground||Nominated|||
|Boston Society of Film Critics Awards||December 12, 2021||Best Editing||Affonso Gonçalves and Adam Kurnitz||Won|||
|Chicago Film Critics Association Awards||December 15, 2021||Best Documentary||The Velvet Underground||Nominated|||
|Cinema Audio Society Awards||March 19, 2022||Outstanding Achievement in Sound Mixing for a Motion Picture – Documentary||Juliana Henao Mesa and Leslie Shatz||Nominated|||
|Cinema Eye Honors||March 1, 2022||Outstanding Non-Fiction Feature||Todd Haynes, Christine Vachon, Julie Goldman, Christopher Clements, and Carolyn Hepburn||Nominated|||
|Audience Choice Prize||Todd Haynes||Nominated|
|Outstanding Editing||Affonso Gonçalves and Adam Kurnitz||Nominated|
|Outstanding Sound Design||Leslie Shatz and Jahn Sood||Won|
|Critics' Choice Documentary Awards||November 14, 2021||Best First Documentary Feature||Todd Haynes||Nominated|||
|Best Editing||Affonso Gonçalves and Adam Kurnitz||Nominated|
|Best Archival Documentary||The Velvet Underground||Nominated|
|Best Music Documentary||The Velvet Underground||Nominated|
|Dorian Awards||March 17, 2022||Best Documentary||The Velvet Underground||Nominated|||
|Hollywood Music in Media Awards||November 17, 2021||Best Music Supervision – Film||Randall Poster||Nominated|||
|IDA Documentary Awards||March 4, 2022||Best Music Documentary||Todd Haynes, Christine Vachon, Julie Goldman, Christopher Clements, Carolyn Hepburn, and David Blackman||Nominated|||
|London Film Critics' Circle Awards||February 6, 2022||Documentary of the Year||The Velvet Underground||Nominated|||
|Motion Picture Sound Editors Golden Reel Awards||March 13, 2022||Outstanding Achievement in Sound Editing – Feature Documentary||Leslie Shatz and Jahn Sood||Nominated|||
|National Society of Film Critics Awards||January 8, 2022||Best Non-Fiction Film||The Velvet Underground||Runner-up|||
|Online Film Critics Society Awards||January 24, 2022||Best Documentary||The Velvet Underground||Nominated|||
|San Diego Film Critics Society Awards||January 10, 2022||Best Documentary||The Velvet Underground||Nominated|||
|San Francisco Bay Area Film Critics Circle Awards||January 10, 2022||Best Documentary Feature||The Velvet Underground||Won|||
|Satellite Awards||April 2, 2022||Best Motion Picture, Documentary||The Velvet Underground||Nominated|||
|St. Louis Film Critics Association Awards||December 19, 2021||Best Documentary Film||The Velvet Underground||Nominated|||
|Toronto Film Critics Association Awards||January 16, 2022||Allan King Documentary Award||The Velvet Underground||Runner-up|||