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"don't need you" is a documentary film that tells the story of the origins of Riot Grrrl in the American independent music scene of the 1990s, and how this feminist movement evolved into a ... See full summary »
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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 ... See full summary »
When household tensions and a sense of worthlessness overcome Evan, he finds escape when he clings with the orphans of a throw-away society. The runaways hold on to each other like a family... See full summary »
I don't give a shit what people think. I know what's real, I don't care if people don't think feminism is important, because I know it is. And I don't care if people don't think late stage Lyme disease exists, because I have it, and other people have it. And we help each other, and we know it exists. And other people can think what they want. My problem is when people get in the way of feminism. Or people get in the way of people who are sick, getting better, because they don't ...
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So after what seems like forever I finally got to see "The Punk Singer" the other night and I just wanted to share some thoughts on it. Watching a documentary about Kathleen Hanna was always going to be quasi-religious for me because I adore her. There wasn't really much in there that fans of Kathleen/Bikini Kill won't already know but that's kind of to be expected for a documentary about such a small subculture. Having said that there were some great interviews with her friends and fans, including the ever awesome Corin Tucker from Sleater-Kinney and a whole host of academics.
It was really cool to listen to people talk about how much of an impact she's had on them, and also to see how, 20 years on from their inception, both Bikini Kill and the wider riot grrrl movement are now being solidified into mainstream feminist history. Another real joy for me was the inclusion of a plethora of rare live footage clips, so many of which are hard to come across online. There's few pleasures in life equal to that of watching a semi-naked Kathleen scream into the face of a burly six-foot male audience member like some royally ticked off dragon. Just the sheer energy of the woman is astounding.
Being a London-based fan of Kathleen is frustrating because she never comes to the UK and it's hard to see or listen to the already limited amount of media stuff she does do. It was great to see recent interviews with her in this documentary, and I was really moved to hear her discuss the terrible ordeal of being diagnosed with Lyme disease, something she never really seems to talk much about. By the time the lights came up I had a whole other level of respect for her, not just because of the way she copes with that shitty disease but because of all the stuff she's been through in her personal life. She's truly inspirational. Dealing with the anti-feminist backlash that kicked off in the wake of Bikini Kill takes an enormous amount of self-conviction and integrity and she's a role model for me because of that.
I honestly don't know what kind of person I'd be without Bikini Kill or Kathleen Hanna in my life. I'd probably be frothing at the mouth in a gutter somewhere out of sheer frustration. When all's said and done it would've been so easy to budge, to sell out and jack in all the activism for an easy life - we're so lucky she didn't.
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