20,000 Days on Earth

DOCUDRAMA; 1hr 37min

DIRECTED BY: Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard

“Look at me now!” Cave and Kylie Minogue

Nobody who knows anything about Bad Seed Nick Cave, 56-year-old Australian musician, screenwriter, author and thinker, would expect a docudrama about his contrived 20,000th day on the planet to be a laugh riot. Yea and verily, it is not. “Mostly, I feel like a cannibal,” he says, about the creative mining of his experiences, “always looking for someone to cook in a pot.”


That’s a bit Deep for 7 AM, but at least there’s no mistaking the self-mining, cerebral vibe. Whatever Cave is up to — in the studio, in analysis, cruising his adopted home town of Brighton in his black (naturally) Jag or bringing it onstage, he’s not a man to take life lightly. His greatest fear is losing his memory. Songwriting is all about “counterpoint.” And the “communal” experience of performing works for him because: “On some level, we all want to be somebody else.” Do we ever.


There’s a floating cast of characters, including actor Ray Winstone and our Kylie. How all this jazz will resonate comes down to individual perception of Cave as (a) a fascinating artist further revealed or (b) a pontificating windbag. Either way, you have to hand it to his chutzpah.