Interested in checking out a solid little documentary? Ginny and I will be talking about a couple we watched recently on the Charlie Tonic Hour, but I highly recommend Don Letts film Punk: Attitude. I’ve seen it four or five times and ran into it again recently.
Anytime I stumble across it, I end up watching it. This film is like comfort food to me. It’s like bumping into unexpected friends at a great bar you haven’t been to in a couple years and having a band you’ve never heard take the stage just as the conversation hits a lull. As I watch, I’m reminded of the scent of beer on a hardwood floor and cigarette smoke in the air. Nice!
Side note… If I were back against the wall and asked to identify one celebrity I feel truly akin to politically, it would be Henry Rollins. Without a moment’s hesitation, this man has it right and his spoken word shows are second to none. A smart punk is a solid spirit in my book. Rollins is all three in one.
This film, in addition to being basically fun and incredibly interesting, shares amazing interview quotes, a perfect line-up of creators (though I note that Steve Albini and Big Black are missing) and proves a solid music history introduction for the uninitiated. So much of today’s good music owes aspects of it’s sound, drive and creative energy to this period of music history. Besides, how can you not love a film that opens with these words by Henry Rollins…
“All you need is one guy or girl to stand up and say fuck this and everyone goes ‘voice of a generation, thank you, I’ve been thinking that, I never had the guts to stand up and say it’. And all of the sudden ‘fuck this’ has a back beat. You know, like John Lennon always said, “say what you mean, mean what you say, put a beat to it, go!”
Have 90 minutes to spare? Why not watch it here?