Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Blank Generation DVD (MVD)

 (MVD) Ever wonder why this 1980 movie, filmed in 1978, isn't considered a punk rock classic, a must see for New York bowery punk fans? Well, this DVD release provides the answer. On the plus side, there's great Voidoids performances at CBGBs (though the film amnages to include the total track at least 7 times in the short film), and there's a riveting cameo by Andy Warhol. But for the most part director Ulli Lommel gets it all wrong. Though he quickly settled into making exploitation horror films better suited to his talents, Lommel, a German actor/director who had worked with Fassbinder, on this and its better known contemporary Cocaine Cowboys, was making believe he was a brilliant art director. Not only is this awkward, shallow film kind of embarrassing along those lines, but the idea that you would make a story about the grimy New York punk scene of the 70s and use a template/script that seems to be split between being written about slimy record execs trying to sign the new Elvis and some kind of trite tortured jazz artist story really misses the vein. The wooden acting of Hell and beautiful future Bond girl Carole Bouquet doesn't help. Or maybe it does. The film is totally watchable and kind of fun because it's so flat and hokey and off the mark.  Poetically, half the characters walk around with cameras in their hands, inanely filming everything around them and thinking their activities are way deeper and more profound and less ridiculous than they actually are. On the DVD box Hell says a bonus feature interview with him is "better than the movie itself," which is accurate. It's great to hear him remember what was going on, and it makes this DVD worth having.

No comments:

Post a Comment