Good and bad vibrations
In the penetrating, musically alluring biopic "Love & Mercy" (PG-13, Lionsgate), Minneapolis director Bill Pohlad truly gets inside the head of troubled musical genius Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys. Paul Dano is a dead ringer for 1960s Wilson, equal parts brilliant and damaged. John Cusack doesn't physically resemble 1980s mental-breakdown Wilson but does an exceptional job portraying a lost soul who finds his way back thanks to the love of an understanding Cadillac saleswoman (Elizabeth Banks). The scenes that depict Wilson creating classics in the recording studio capture the process of creating monumental music as effectively as any nondocumentary has.