ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Springsteen & I Blu-ray/DVD review

Updated on November 30, 2013

In November 2012, director Baillie Walsh began work on a film in which Bruce Springsteen’s biggest fans described how The Boss and his music have affected their lives. Inspired by the 2011 documentary, “Life in a Day”, Walsh and the film’s producers (including Ridley Scott) sought short, less than five minute, video contributions from these fans. The result was the movie “Springsteen & I”, just released by Eagle Vision on Blu-ray and DVD.

The movie is at times poignant and funny, and provides some interesting Springsteen live concert footage. It’s obvious that there’s a special relationship between Springsteen and his fans.

“Springsteen & I” starts off a little slow, with several fans using three words to describe what “Bruce means to me”, such as joy, passion, and intense. One devotee shows her Springsteen CD’s, DVD’s, and other assorted memorabilia on a kitchen counter, while off camera, her husband asks her Boss related questions. A fan relates how she was brought on stage at a UK Springsteen concert in the “Courtney Cox role” for “Dancing in the Dark”.

UK fan Rachel Gould dances with The Boss onstage in "Springsteen & I"
UK fan Rachel Gould dances with The Boss onstage in "Springsteen & I" | Source

But the film really kicks in at about the 17 minute mark, when a middle aged Springsteen fan chokes up talking about how the The Boss’s lyrics about sadness and triumph (in certain songs) have affected him personally. This is followed by a clip of Springsteen playing “Mansion on the Hill” on acoustic guitar at Neil Young’s first Bridge School benefit concert in 1986.

“Springsteen & I” then takes a 180 degree turn into humor, as Swindon, England’s David Tulloch complains on camera about having Bruce Springsteen music “rammed down his throat 24-7” by his Boss loving wife, Shagufta. He even complains that Springsteen’s legendary three plus hour concerts are too long.

We also meet Nick Ferraro, “The Philly Elvis” impersonator, who Springsteen brought up on stage from the audience during an October 2009 concert. Through the magic of YouTube, we see “Philly Elvis” perform “All Shook Up” and a tiny bit of “Blue Suede Shoes” with Springsteen and the E Street Band. After Ferraro leaves the stage, Springsteen tells the Philly Spectrum audience, “I have no idea where the…he came from” and laughs.

Bruce Meets the Philly Elvis

Springsteen is known for his many songs about blue collar, working class people. A great sequence in the film features a British former factory employee, who talks about saving money for 20 years to fly across the pond with his wife for a “Bruce Trip” and first visit to America in 2000. The four day New York City holiday was highlighted by their attending two Springsteen and E Street Band Reunion Tour concerts at New York’s Madison Square Garden.

For the first show, their seats were located in the top section, nosebleed level, right at the back of the stage. While settling in their seats, the fan describes being met by a “bear-like character in baggy shorts and a beard”, possibly Springsteen’s late assistant/road manager Terry Magovern. The man asked them if they’d like their tickets upgraded, gave them wristbands and new tickets, and told the couple he worked for Springsteen. He accepted no money for the new tickets, didn’t want to be pointed out, and then disappeared. The couple went to their new seats, which ended up being front row, the best in the house. They were overjoyed to be seeing a Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band concert, as close as you could get, at the "World's Most Famous Arena".The story is proceeded by video of Springsteen performing a song written about his father, “Factory” (“Factory takes his hearing/factory gives him life/The working, the working, just the working life”), from a 1978 Landover, Maryland concert.

Born to Run from Springsteen & I

Upon the movie’s brief theatrical release last summer, Walsh told that he didn’t want the film to include stories that made Springsteen appear to be a rock deity. “There were stories about how generous he is, stuff about 9/11, and he comes off a bit god-like, and I didn’t feel comfortable with those stories” Walsh said. “I think this film doesn’t build Bruce to be a god. There’s an undercurrent that he’s a very decent man, and that does come across in the stories that are told.” Thus, the movie has no mentions of Bruce’s past support for Vietnam and Iraqi War veterans, food banks, Parkinson’s disease research, Amnesty International (The 1988 Human Rights tour), and more.

Bruce Springsteen, Monchengladbach, Germany 2013
Bruce Springsteen, Monchengladbach, Germany 2013 | Source

The disc’s Bonus Material includes six songs from Springsteen and the E Street Band’s London Hyde Park set from July 2012. This is the infamous show in which the concert organizers cut off the power onstage when Springsteen and the E Street Band, joined by unannounced special guest Paul McCartney, played past curfew. Springsteen's face beams as he shares the stage with the ex-Beatle during “I Saw Her Standing There” and “Twist and Shout”.

Another feature, Meet the Fans, finds Springsteen greeting a few of the people shown in the documentary. That includes Shagufta and David Tulloch the non-Bruce music fan. Springsteen tells David, “ I tried to shorten the show for this man, I gave it my best shot, it just didn’t work that’s all”. David relates how he spoke to Springsteen’s manager Jon Landau at this filming about the concert’s length. David says Landau replied, “Just as a treat then, the London one will be four hours. Just for you.”

Twist and Shout, The Power's Cut Off

Picture quality varies during “Springsteen & I”, especially during the live concert footage, which is surprising since Springsteen videographer Thom Zimny is listed as an “Archive Consultant” in the credits. But the brief 1985 L.A. Coliseum clip of “Born to Run” is crystal clear, and bodes well if by chance a “Born in the U.S.A” 30th anniversary tour DVD/Blu-ray is released. No booklet is included with the "Springsteen & I" disc.

The movie might not be one you’d want to watch repeatedly, Still, after viewing the film, it’s easy to see that “The Ties That Bind” Bruce Springsteen and his fans together remain strong..


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)