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The cream of New York new wave/punk filmed live at CBGB's when the scene was just beginning. Includes performances by Patti Smith, Blondie, Television, the Ramones, Talking Heads, the Heartbreakers, the Shirts, Wayne County, the Marbles, the Dolls, Miamis, Harry Toledo, and the Tuff Darts (w/Robert Gordon). Written by
A quick description of this would lead me to think that it's right up my alley. So many of the right words. Grainy, black and white. Cinema verite. 70s New York punk scene. Television. Voidoids.
Unfortunately, it's godawful. Bordering on unwatchable. There is an important difference between gritty realism and watching someone's home videos, and this is definitely the latter. Apparently, the film was taken silent, and then demos and other recordings were played over it. Which is pretty damn annoying, especially considering that half of the time it's a completely different song being played. Christ, for all I can tell it's a different band, as outside of a couple of bands that would become famous, these people are mostly forgotten.
And since most of these bands are so obscure, wouldn't it be nice to have some kind of title cards to introduce us? No, we (sort of) just see some band we've never heard of and a demo of their song playing in the background. Like the song, and want to know more about them. You're out of luck. If the filmmakers are still alive, maybe you can hunt them down and they'll tell you. Otherwise you're screwed.
So, in summation, this film is not entertaining, not particularly beautiful, and it can't possibly teach you anything you didn't already know. In other words, it's absolutely useless.
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