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1 hr. 37 min.

Plot Summary
Béla Fleck is a virtuoso banjo player who embarks on a personal and cultural journey to Africa to learn about the origins of his beloved instrument -- which did not, contrary to popular belief, originate in backwoods Appalachia. Touring Uganda, Tanzania, Gambia and Mali, Fleck jams with some master musicians, duels with a Gambian banjo player, learns about the banjo's ancient history and basks in the pleasure that music affords, a pleasure that transcends cultural boundaries.


Director: Sascha Paladino

Genres: Documentary

Throw Down Your Heart (2008)

Release Date: May 19th, 2008|1 hr. 37 min.

critic reviews (8)
fan reviews ( )
  • 75
    San Francisco Chronicle

    Part road trip, part music lesson, follows virtuoso musician Béla Fleck on a trip through Africa to reclaim the banjo's roots. It's an entertaining journey, and director Sascha Paladino injects humor and pathos into the musical sequences. show more

  • 70
    The Hollywood Reporter

    The saving grace of Throw Down Your Heart is Fleck himself, who transcends the contrived unconventionality of the project to emanate a genuine warmth and camaraderie. This extraordinary performer remains shy, soft-spoken, simpatico and as unpretentious as he is talented. show more

  • 63
    Boston Globe

    Through it all, Fleck seems at a loss for words, stumbling through small talk and staring feebly as a Ugandan musician weeps during a song about his dead father. show more

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