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American Hardcore (R)





Release Date: September 22nd, 2006 by Sony Pictures Classics.
Directed by Paul Rachman.


BASIC PREMISE: A documentary about the history of punk rock from 1980 to 1986. Based on the book by Steven Bush.

ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: If you enjoy listening to punk rock music, youíll be mildly entertained by American Hardcore. However, those unfamiliar to punk rock who want to appreciate it more will be underwhelmed and bored. There are interviews with some punk rock bands from the 80ís such as Minor Threat, Black Flag, Cro-Mags, Gang Green and Bad Brains. The problem is that the band-members talk a lot but say very little thatís interesting. Moreover, the interviews seem tedious. They describe the rise of punk rock and how the punk rock scene included plenty of drugs and alcohol. The rise began when Ronald Reagan served his first term of office as President. Punk rock essentially died during Reaganís second term. Director Paul Rachman does a decent job of giving the history of punk rock, but fails to show the human side of it that would make it much more fascinating. On a positive note, the cinematography and editing style are both superb and keep the pace moving rapidly. If only Rachman had included more personal and provocative questions during interviews, that would have helped a great deal to make this a more engrossing and less dull.

SPIRITUAL VALUE: Unfortunately, none.

INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: Dull and tedious.

NUMBER OF TIMES I CHECKED MY WATCH: 8

IN A NUTSHELL: Well-edited, but often dull, tedious and underwhelming.

RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: TV


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