Director/Producer Stephen Woolley's STONED is a dramatic attempt--researched for 10 years--to accurately portray the controversial events surrounding the death of Rolling Stones founding member and guitarist Brian Jones at age 27, on July 2nd, 1969.
To create his work, Woolley synthesized the written memoirs and testimonials of the witnesses who were there. Beginning a few months before Jones's death, the film focuses on a relationship he forged with Frank Thorogood (Paddy Constantine), a builder hired to fix up the rock star's home.
Alone--save for his girlfriend Anna--and ostracized from his band-mates due to drug problems and legal tangles, Jones draws Thorogood in as a part-time friend and part-time assistant. When Jones is summarily fired from the band--only weeks before his demise--Thorogood is also let go, and becomes jealous and enraged.
Deftly placed flashbacks throughout the film, catalog Jones's ascent and--more gratuitously--his drug-filled self-destructive descent. Coupling these with the volatile relationship with Thorogood, the film discreetly shows the complex causes of Jones's untimely death.
To capture the spirit of the times, Woolley fills his soundtrack with 1960s nuggets, including excellent covers of Stones material by modern British acts like A Band of Bees and Little Barrie.
He also shoots the flashbacks and recreated concert footage with a hand-held 16mm camera, achieving a real-life documentary feel.
In this film, Brian Jones and his unfortunate end (strangely ruled "death by misadventure" at the time) are cast further into the mythical and legendary status they have achieved--and deserved.