The child is called William Miller in the film; he is interpreted by Patrick Fugit as a boy shaped by the fierce values of his mother, who leads him to the concert that will change his life, and deposits him with the mantra “Don’t do drugs!” The character and story are based on the life of Cameron Crowe, the film’s writer-director, who was indeed a teenage Rolling Stone writer and who knows how lucky he was. Crowe grew up writing and directing “Say Anything” (1989), one of the best teen movies ever; in this film, he surpasses himself.
The movie isn’t just about William Miller. This is the time, the group and the early 1970s when idealism collided with commerce. The group he connects with is called Stillwater. He tells his way behind the scenes of San Diego knowing the names of the band members and giving them specific compliments as they rush into the arena. William wins the sympathy of Russell Hammond (Billy Crudup), the guitarist, who lets him in. Behind the scenes, he meets his guide to this new world, a girl who thinks his name is Penny Lane (Kate Hudson). This is not a groupie, she explains indignantly, but a group helper. She’s, of course, a groupie but has so much theory about her role, it’s almost like sex for her is a philosophical exercise.
William’s mother, Elaine (Frances McDormand), is a college professor who believes in vegetarianism, progressive politics, and the corrupting influence of rock music. Banning rock albums by her eldest daughter Anita (Zooey Deschanel), she shows an album cover and asks him to look at the telltale signs in Simon and Garfunkel’s eyes: “Pot!” Anita leaves, bequeathing her albums to William, who finds a note in one of them: “This song explains why I am leaving the house to become a flight attendant.” His words are: “I went in search of America”. This is what William does. He intends to be absent from school for just a few days. But as Russell and the rest of Stillwater get used to his presence, he ends up on the bus and drives far southwest. Along the way, he observes the tension between Russell and lead singer Jeff Bebe (Jason Lee), who thinks Russell is getting more attention than his role definition deserves: “I’m the lead singer, and you. are the guitarist with mystique. ” William has two guardian angels to watch over him. One of them is Penny Lane, who is almost as young as him, but who lies about his age. William loves her, or thinks he loves her, but she loves Russell, or says she loves, and William admires Russell too, and Russell maintains a reservation that makes it hard to know what he is. thought. He looks sullen and the facial hair of a rock star, but he’s still only in his early twenties, and one of the best moments in the movie comes when William’s mother talks to him on the phone. dangers for his son: “Do I make myself clear?” “Yes, ma’am,” he said, returning to childhood.