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Metal: A Headbanger's Journey (2005)

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An examination of the heavy metal music subculture that tries to explain why, despite the longevity and popularity of the genre, fans are marginalized and ridiculed for their passion.
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tom Araya ... Himself
Gavin Baddeley Gavin Baddeley ... Himself
Blasphemer Blasphemer ... Himself
Randy Blythe ... Himself
Joe Bottiglieri Joe Bottiglieri ... Himself
Eric Bryan Eric Bryan ... Himself
Jackie Chambers Jackie Chambers ... Herself
Monte Conner Monte Conner ... Himself
Alice Cooper ... Himself
Denis 'Piggy' D'Amour Denis 'Piggy' D'Amour ... Himself
Pamela Des Barres ... Herself
Bruce Dickinson ... Himself
Ronnie James Dio ... Himself
Malcolm Dome Malcolm Dome ... Himself
Rose Dyson Rose Dyson ... Herself
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Storyline

Sam Dunn is a 30-year old anthropologist who wrote his graduate thesis on the plight of Guatemalan refugees. Recenly he has decided to study the plight of a different culture, one he has been a part of since he was a 12-year old: the culture of heavy metal. Sam sets out on a global journey to find out why this music has been consistently stereotyped, dismissed and condemned and yet is loved so passionately by its millions of fans. Along the way, Sam explores metals' obsession with some of life's most provacative subjects - sexuality, religion, violence and death - and discovers some things about the culture that even he can't defend. Shot on location in the UK, Germany, Norway, Canada and the US, this documentary is the first of its kind. It is both a defense of a long-misunderstood art form and a window for the outsider into the spectacle that is heavy metal. Written by Scot McFadyen

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Film That Will Take You Into the Heart of the Beast.

Genres:

Documentary | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, violent images, some nudity and sexual content | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Canada

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 June 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Metal - A Headbanger's Journey See more »

Filming Locations:

Canada

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,300,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Varg Vikernes was released from prison the week of May 13 2009 after serving nearly 16 years. See more »

Goofs

Dunn also mentions the "Filthy 15", a list of artists with lyrics considered obscene in one of a number of ways. Sam mentions that, of the 15, 8 are metal bands- he has miscounted. Upon reviewing the list, Danish black metal band Mercyful Fate make the list but bump the count to 9 bands. They are also not highlighted like the other metal bands sharing spots on the list. See more »

Quotes

Sam Dunn: I mean, whether we like it or not, black metal in Norway is known for, uh, a string of events that happened in the early 1990's, around a series of arsons. I'd just want to know your thoughts on the action of those events, the motivations behind those events - whther you'd agree with them or whether you'd disagree?
Gaahl: Church burnings and all these things are, of course, a thing that I support a hundred percent. And it should've been done much more and will be done much more in the future. We have ...
See more »

Connections

References This Is Spinal Tap (1984) See more »

Soundtracks

The Number of the Beast
Written by Steve Harris (as Stephen Harris)
Performed by Iron Maiden
Licensed courtesy of EMI Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Metal as a lifestyle and not a passing trend
26 September 2005 | by varathron1See all my reviews

Metal: A head banger's journey

When this documentary starts showing at the multiplexes, it will be the biggest exposure this musical genre would have gotten thus far, aside from a few ridiculous lawsuits that went public throughout the years. The concept itself that mainstream audiences will be learning of everything from Dio's unique opinions on things to Norwegian Black Metal is quite appalling. More importantly, hopefully this documentary will clear once and for all every false doubt and misconception that Metal has always portrayed to the misinformed.

A head banger's journey starts off by examining Metal's roots, the long debate in regards to who was the first Metal band ever. Then, we are taken through an analysis of how metal sub-genres came to exist. Dunn also gives his thoughts about Metal's culture, viewpoints, religious standpoints, the fans and every other aspect of metal. Some of the veterans of the scene as well as some insightful outsiders give their interesting opinions to support the argument at hand. The film balances the serious aspects of Metal with some unintentional humor. Personalities like Alice Cooper, Bruce Dickinson, Alex Webster, Slipknot, Ghaal, Dee Snider, Doro, Ihsahn and many others offer their own individual thoughts in an intellectual way while bands like Mayhem make a fool out of themselves during a drunken interview.

Dunn is a true metal head. It is his passion, yet he gives a critical and sometimes subjective opinion of the music at hand. The documentary is extremely entertaining and informative. It made me proud to be a metal head. It even made me give bands I'm not too fond of another chance. Bottom line is, if you're a Metal fan you'll enjoy this from beginning to end. If you're a curious outsider, here's your chance to understand our world better and get a more defined opinion of our music. And even if you don't, well to quote Dunn at the end: "We're doing just fine without you…"


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