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rare female film critic | by maryann johanson

10 years of Flick Filosopher: heavy duty documentary

I’m still stuned that I loved, loved, loved this movie as much as I did. From my review of Metallica Some Kind of Monster:

If This Is Spinal Tap had been a drama, it would have been Metallica: Some Kind of Monster.

Now, I don’t mean to demean Metallica or disparage the film by likening them or it to a mockumentary in which the “mock” equates to “ridiculing” as much as to “fake.” Not at all. It’s just that Tap so overshadows the genre of the rock movie that it’s almost impossible not to see the spectre of Tap in a film about a heavy-metal band looking to reinvent itself and nearly disintegrating in the process. Especially not when this is the first movie about music I’ve seen since Tap that is as profoundly moving, if in the opposite direction: If Tap attained a kind of comic genius in its skewering of heavy metal, Monster lends it a dramatic new gravitas. I’m not a Metallica fan and I’m not sure I even particularly like their music, but this extraordinarily powerful and intimate film had moved me to tears by the time it was over. Monster could redefine what the genre can and should achieve; it may well be the new yardstick against which the next 20 years of rock movies will be measured.

review of Metallica: Some Kind of Monster, posted 07.29.04

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