American Hardcore (2006) 10/10!
January 16, 2008
The history of American punk rock 1980-1986
Based on the book: American Hardcore: A tribal history by Steven Blush and George Petros
Director: Paul Rachman
Cinematography: Paul Rachman
Writer: Steven Blush
Interviews with: Bad Brains, Black Flag, Minor Threat, SS Decontrol, and too many others to list here…
This is a great little documentary that really gets into the nitty-gritty of the hardcore movement. Great interviews with key players in the scene are mixed in with some amazing archival footage from shows that’ll make you want to stage dive in the middle of your living room and quite possibly f*ck something up. For people who, like me, were born after hardcore died, this film could very easily get you buying every CD from the movement that your bank account can handle (and thankfully, as I write this, Christmas is only a week away).
I’ve read a good deal of reviews on the movie, and some of the criticism on it has to due with the fact that nothing pre-1979 which influenced the hardcore movement is presented, and the same goes for anything post-1986. It’s true, the doc centers solely on the prime years of hardcore’s rise and sudden fall. A little more attention could have been put on the rapid decline of the movement, however, because the way it’s addressed kind of gives the feeling that everyone’s still a little bitter about it (which they probably are).
Above all, I think the film did a great job of presenting not only the biggest bands, but also a lot of smaller bands from different areas. Obviously there’s always at least a handful of amazing bands that get left out, but hey, they can’t fit in everyone.
American Hardcore gets 10 thrashers out of 10.