Starring: Kevin Lyman, Mike Posner, Chris Drew, Forever Came Calling, Suicide Silence, Pennywise, and many more
Directed By: Parris Patton
Studio: Vans Off The Wall
Official Site: http://noroomforrockstars.com/
There have been Warped Tour documentaries, behind the scenes videos, specials on broadcast TV, and anything else you can think of. No Room For Rockstars is directed by Parris Patton and is the newest Warped doc that focuses on a few bands/musicians and individuals involved with the tour. While I don’t care about any of the featured bands, it was still an interesting film.
No Room For Rockstars isn’t just your usual documentary showing behind the scenes stuff. It manages to show the many sides of the Warped Tour; The break-out stars to the struggling bands in vans. The movie also focuses on Warped Tour founder Kevin Lyman and how hands-on he is with his tour; plus a veteran stage manager who managed to turn his life around because of The Warped Tour. The main bands or musicians featured in this include: Forever Came Calling, who follow the tour to play in parking lots and try to make money on demos; Mike Poseur, I mean Posner, a rising Justin Timberlake wanna-be whose head is inflating before our eyes; Suicide Silence who play just about everyday to support their families; and finally Never Shout Never’s Chris Drew who just wants to make music even though he’s becoming an idol amongst the teens. The punk veterans of the tour like Pennywise, The Bouncing Souls, and others make cameos so to speak in this but that’s about it. Fletcher is actually the one that came up with this movie title when he was being interviewed. But the main focus of the movie is on the newer generation of “punk” and rock and roll.
The Warped Tour is usually called Punk Rock Summer Camp but I just don’t think the word punk should be included in that tagline anymore. With everything, things evolve and it’s quite obvious where the Warped Tour is currently at. Teeny-bopper, whiny screamo style bands or hip hop/indie singers that make the teenage girls scream like they were watching Michael Jackson.
I can usually count on one hand the amount of bands I want to see at the Warped Tour these days and that’s fine. I’m getting older and the Warped Tour will cater to the kids and what’s the latest trends. It’s a business after all and they need to make money. Watching this documentary about the bands on the Warped Tour confirms what I think about the current tour these days. I can’t stand the music that Lyman decides to pick on the tour and wish he had more true punk bands. Nowadays, it’s a wide variety of stuff but that wide variety is usually just shit to me. I would not want to sit through a set of Mike Posner in a million years. That would be the time I go grab some food. With all my usual curmudgeon ranting about the current state of Warped Tour, I still enjoyed watching this documentary.
I felt bad for the struggling band in a van, Forever Came Calling, and what they had to go through everyday. Some days they didn’t even have money for gas to get to the next date, and they weren’t on the tour. They got lucky towards the end of the movie and got a chance to perform on the Kevin Says stage. I’m pretty sure I saw them at my last Warped Tour, making people try to listen to their music as they are walking around. Honestly, I can’t stand that but kudos to them for trying to break out and make some money by doing that. Even though by doing that they have to subject themselves to annoying kids in the parking lot.
I think the movie is best when the documentary focuses on those guys than the other popular, rising stars like Mike Posner or Chris Drew. Although, I did like what Chris Drew had to say about the corporate feel to the Warped Tour. The fact that it cost 20 bucks for a cheeseburger or 10 bucks for Gatorade is fucking insane. I’m surprised they haven’t charged to take a shit yet. Another part of the movie I liked that involved Chris Drew was when he got hurt and had to walk through the crowd on crutches. One fan girl didn’t care he was hurt and on crutches, she had to harass the shit out of him and take a picture.
Even though I don’t like Warped Tour anymore, it’s still a unique tour in that many different bands will play everyday, and many bands are at different points in their careers. Some luck out and get noticed, others keep on pushing on to catch a break. Doesn’t matter which bands Patton focused on, because it probably would have been the same for all. Filmmaking wise, I liked the way the movie was shot but it was kind of hard to tell how good the quality was based on the screener I watched. I would have added some subtitles sometime because some people weren’t mic’d up. It felt like watching a one way conversation at times. It’s a nitpick but that’s what I would have done.
No Room For Rockstars is an interesting documentary, and one that should be seen if you enjoy the music that is featured in the film or have ever been to the Warped Tour. You can purchase the documentary on iTunes on April 2nd and DVD on May 15th.
Bottom Line: An interesting documentary that shows multiple points of views of the tour.
Running Time: 97 mins