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The Last Dispatch (Unrated)

Release Date: April 21st, 2006 (Village East Cinemas) by Fabrication Films.
Directed by Helmut Schleppi.

BASIC PREMISE: A documentary about Dispatch, an independent band that held its last concert in Boston on July 2004.

ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: Whether or not you’ve heard a Dispatch song before, there’s no denying how amazing and interesting it is for Dispatch to rise to so much fame without being attached to a label. The band members include Chad Urmston, Pete Francis, and Brad Corrigan, all of whom have been best friends for many years. The Last Dispatch follows them around before their final concert of the same title. Through many lively, personal interviews, they show how much they truly love playing music. But, more importantly, what helped them become so famous was Napster, a free online file-sharing network that got shut down. This free online file-sharing network broadened their demographics so that anyone could hear their great music—not just those in small towns. Despite their rise-to-fame, they still never managed sign a deal with any labels. Director Helmut Schleppi expertly balances behind-the-scenes footage, background information, and concert footage while always maintaining focus. Schleppi also includes scenes with each band-members’ dad as they watch their beloved sons rehearse together. By this point, Chad, Pete, and Brad have had internal problems with the band, which inevitably led to their break-up. Fortunately, the final concert in Boston will make all fans forget about the break-up by feeling so much raw energy from the music with a record-breaking 110,000 die-hard fans cheering, screaming and having a great time—just like you will while watching this film.

SPIRITUAL VALUE: Schleppi doesn’t explore why Dispatch broke apart, other than because of a simple clash of artistic egos. However, admittedly, it’s probably better this way because, otherwise, Chad, Pete and Brad would feel uncomfortable as if they were being psychoanalyzed. Life itself is full of ups and downs, while sometimes having more downs than ups. By focusing more on the ups, Schleppi pays a feel-great tribute a truly wonderful band whose story everyone deserves to discover at least once in their lifetime.



IN A NUTSHELL: Nothing short of amazing! A delightful tribute to one of the greatest independent bands in music history!

RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: Movie Theater (1st Run)

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