Punk’s Not Dead

DVD Reviews | Jul 22nd, 2008

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Starring Lots of punks like Jello Biafra, Ian Mackeye, Henry Rollins, Tim Armstrong, Dick Lucas, Billie Joe Armstrong, Keith Morris, Mike Ness
Written By: Susan Dynner
Directed By: Susan Dynner
Studio: MVD
Buy on Amazon.com link

I wanted to see this documentary when it was in select theaters back in 2007 when it was released. But since I live in the boonies, and the movie wasn’t playing anywhere near me, Ind figured Ind just wait for DVD anyway, Punk’s Not Dead reminds me of a similar documentary American Hardcore and I think it’s just as good! I love watching punk documentaries because they are informative, entertaining and they make me want to break out some old albums as well.

Punk’s Not Dead documentary is written and directed by Susan Dynner, who’s an American punk/hardcore fan. The film was screened at various film festivals and premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in 2006. There are so many punk musicians and singers that make an appearance in this documentary so it’s hard to tell you everybody that’s in it. Some of the more notable punks include Jello Biafra, Ian Mackeye, Henry Rollins, Tim Armstrong, Dick Lucas, Brian Baker, Billie Joe Armstrong, Steve Diggle, Joe Escalante, Keith Morris, Mike Ness, Brett Gurewitz, Jim Linberg and Kevin Lyman.

It’s kind of hard to fit the entire history of punk rock in a 90 minute movie but Dynner does a good job with it. She showcases some bands & musicians more than others like The Adicts, UK Subs, Dick Lucas of Subhumans and some others. Dynner also features some hilarious TV show clips and talk show clips from the 70s that discuss punk rock. Seeing a policeman from Chips slamdancing in the locker room against the lockers is pretty funny! I liked how the director briefly glanced at The Ramones, Sex Pistols, and The Clash and focused on other bands that haven’t really been featured as much like The Dead Kennedys, The Exploited, UK Subs, Subhumans, Minor Threat, The Adicts, Social Distortion, etc. The documentary shows you how punk rock started out to be but what people consider it to be now. There’s major digs at the Warped Tour and all the bands that have played on it. But there are also many bands defending it as well like Pennywise and Kevin Lyman. It’s good to hear both sides of punk rock.

There’s a hysterical montage scene where all the pop punk bands of today are seen jumping on stage in unison to the music of The Blue Danube. It made me laugh out loud when I saw it because I’ve been making fun of that for years. Other parts of the documentary that I liked was seeing where old the punks live today. Dick Lucas lives out in the woods somewhere, in some shack where he paints and creates music. There are so many interesting things with punk rock & hardcore that you can’t cover it all, unless Punk’s Not Dead turns into a weekly documentary TV series on IFC or Sundance. Ind love to see that but I’m sure that won’t happen. If you’re a fan of punk rock & hardcore, be sure to watch this informative & entertaining documentary!

Over 2 hours of extras including: interviews, exclusive behind the scenes content, and never before seen footage.




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Rating: NR
Running Time: 97 minutes
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