New Surreal Film Chronicles Garth Brooks Meeting George Jones
Well now, this is certainly something we were not expecting to see in 2023 or any other year, but here we go. There is a new film being released that chronicles Garth Brooks meeting George Jones before George is scheduled to be cryogenically frozen in 1994. Called Country Gold, the film stars actor Ben Hall as George Jones, and writer/director Mickey Reece as “Troyal Brux” who is a rising 90s country music superstar in printed shirts—a.k.a. Garth Brooks, but probably due to Garth’s litigious nature, the name is changed. Troyal is Garth’s real first name.
Characterized as a something between a surreal comedy and fantasy film, the plot unfolds as Troyal Brux is blowing up in country music, and cites George Jones as his primary influence in interviews. Jones catches wind of the endorsement, and invites Brux to meet him in Nashville on the eve of going on an “extended vacation,” i.e. going into the deep freeze. While in Nashville, the two have a wild night together, with Brux excitedly meeting one of his idols, and Jones imparting important wisdom to the young star.
Clearly, a lot of this plot is pretty absurd on the surface, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t more substantive and touching moments underneath. One of the subplots is how George Jones points out to Troyal Brux all the folks who play country music, but never get their opportunity in the spotlight, while Jones’s own life illustrates the trappings and finite nature of stardom.
There has been no press about this film outside of the indie film realm. But after debuting at indie film festivals Fantasia and Fantastic Fest, and playing in select theaters this month, the reviews have been surprisingly positive. Country Gold holds an 89% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and a 100% positive audience score. As Anton Bitel of Projected Figures states,
” …this night of sex and drugs and country-and-western encompasses the arrogance of success, the fleetingness of celebrity and the ravages of time itself. And like all the best country songs, it comes steeped in melancholy and regret.”
So who knows, maybe this film has got something. Mickey Reece is an acclaimed indie filmmaker from Oklahoma who has explored musical themes in film previously, including in Mickey Reece’s Alien, which despite the title, was about the relationship between Elvis and Priscilla Presley. Still, audiences should go into it understanding this is an independent film shot in black and white, not a big budget production.
Country Gold was shown in a limited run of very select theaters in March, and is currently being screened at the Rodeo Cinema in Oklahoma City and the Circle Cinema in Tulsa until April 3rd. The film premiers on the indie film streaming service Fandor on April 4th.
March 30, 2023 @ 11:29 am
I would like this better if it was just about two random made up characters instead of Garth and George.
March 30, 2023 @ 11:47 am
Yeah, and one of them should have been named Chris Gaines.
March 31, 2023 @ 2:12 pm
Well, Mickey Reece has one thing over Chris Gaines: HIS movie actually got made!
March 30, 2023 @ 11:36 am
Isn’t “Troyal” Garth Brooks’ middle name?
March 30, 2023 @ 11:38 am
My bad, its actually his legal first name.
March 30, 2023 @ 11:43 am
Yes, that is correct. My favorite part of all of this might be that they had to change Garth’s name in fear of being sued, while Nancy Jones was probably like, “Whatever, go for it!”
March 30, 2023 @ 3:17 pm
If they were really motiviated by fear of being sued, I don’t think the movie producers would have chosen “Troyal”–Garth’s actual first name–as the name of the Brooksian character–or dressed him up to look like he stepped off the “Chase” album cover (except with a black hat instead of white)
Seems to me like they’re doing a wicked spoof of Garth… and are quite in-his-face and proud of it.
March 30, 2023 @ 1:31 pm
Wake me up when they have Johnny Cash shooting lightning bolts from his hands at Music City execs.
March 30, 2023 @ 1:48 pm
Maybe they both end up on the roof of a convenience store playing hockey.
March 30, 2023 @ 2:12 pm
March 30, 2023 @ 2:37 pm
I can already see it now. Thousands of people insisting that George is going to brought out of stasis, similar to Elvis still being alive.
March 30, 2023 @ 3:15 pm
Are they going to have Luke Bryan working at a gas station with his cousin Goober and have him quote superhero comic books when his beloved Drill Instructor Carter shows up? Asking for a friend
Lester Roadhog Moran
March 30, 2023 @ 3:36 pm
Will Todd Snider sing his version of Beer Run, or If Tomorrow Never Comes on the soundtrack?
March 30, 2023 @ 6:01 pm
And here I thought Garth said Billy Joel was his biggest influence.
April 1, 2023 @ 8:05 pm
For some reason I thought it was Elton John or James Taylor? I remember reading about in Jimmy Bowens bio (which is fantastic btw) talking about auditioning Garth at his (Bowens) home in Nashville.
March 30, 2023 @ 6:04 pm
It would have been better if, instead of Jones, Troyal had met Waylon Jennings.
Keepin it Country
April 1, 2023 @ 3:25 pm
Sir Adam the Great
March 30, 2023 @ 7:51 pm
This looks insane.
I’m gonna love it.
March 31, 2023 @ 3:06 am
This is the best news I have seen since George and Tammy. I can’t wait to watch this. Thanks Trigger. Forget about turning us on to good music, if you can keep finding surreal independent movies about George Jones, that alone is worth the price of admission.
March 31, 2023 @ 3:18 am
On the topic of independent movies, may I put in a plug for “Thrillbillys.” Somehow I found this on DVD years ago and it is one of my most prized possessions. It stars among others the great Wes Freed, the native Virginian best known for doing the Drive By Truckers art, but who also had a few awesome Richmond-based alt-country bands like The Dirtball and The Shiners. He passed away last year. The movie is low budget and from the looks of it even nowhere near as sophisticated as “Country Gold,” but it has an excellent soundtrack built around DBT, Angry Johnny and Freed, and really captures the attitude of that southern country-punk scene of the aughts.
March 31, 2023 @ 2:09 pm
Not a fan of Garth Brooks….and I’ve never been a fan of Garth Brooks. When he first came on the scene not too long after I heard him do an interview and he stated “country music today wouldn’t be what it is without me”. Ummm hello….what about Hank Williams Sr (or eve JR), Ernest Tubb, Faron Young, Ray Price, Johnny Cash, Charley Pride……and George Jones too. Garth Brooks ended a lot of country music singers careers….cause they just couldn’t sell as many units as Garth did so the labels dropped these artists cause they weren’t selling like Garth. I remember Garth having an album out (on the Capitol label). Tanya Tucker who had been with them for quite awhile had an album coming out too. Garths album got all the promotion. Tanya’s got nothing. She questioned the label and she was told she isn’t selling enough units to get any kind of promotion. They said either take it or leave it. And she left Capital records for an independent label. These artists made millions for their labels and just cause they weren’t doing it in the current market they were dropped…or forced to leave cause of no promotion. How sad!!!!! To me Garth Brooks was an artist for someone that used to listen to rock music and now they could say they liked country too. All bullshit!!!!!!!!
***Please no hating cause I don’t like Garth. This is only my opinion.****
April 1, 2023 @ 1:50 am
I am a fan of Garth and George…….and this does look like it could be fun.
April 1, 2023 @ 6:01 am
might be the best movie since slingblade
April 1, 2023 @ 7:28 am
Is this an early April Fool post?
April 2, 2023 @ 3:35 pm
If Garth was going to sue, they would’nt have used Troyal Brux.