It’s a crazy, mixed up world and we are thankful for movies that offer proof. Slashfilm’s Weekend Weirdness examines such flicks, whether in the form of a premiere for a provocative indie, a mini review, or…the Boosh!
“We were going to do [a tour of America],” Noel Fielding admitted to an enthused, sold-out crowd last weekend at the 92Y Tribeca in NYC. “But then my hat caught fire.” Fielding’s voice during the last bit softened into the feigned shyness typified by the London hipsters and rockstars The Mighty Boosh has expertly razzed through the aughts onward.
There was a waft of irony to their appearance in the city, since fans had come to the venue, not to see The Boosh perform, but to watch a new doc entitled Journey of the Childmen about their 2008/2009 tour in the UK. Tickets for two exclusive screenings actually sold out before it was announced online that The Boosh would be attending. Their presence resulted in a unique pop culture snapshot; here was a dedicated fanbase and two of the most original British comedians working today, all parties aware of the gap in mainstream crossover awareness outside the screening room. And in minutes, the former would be watching the latter perform to a 12,000 person arena many miles away.
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Any straight guy who sees The Runaways will have difficulty standing up to go text outside, what with a 15-year-old Dakota Fanning seducing Japan in a bustier, snorting coke, and tonguing KStew. I mean, what does it all mean? And it’s only moderately less awkward discussing the burgeoning sexuality and punk hedonism of young girls with another guy. So, rather than compute my feelings about the rock biopic into a traditional review, I decided to ask a female’s opinion. /Film could not be more psyched to discourse on The Runaways with NYC-based author Marisa Meltzer, whose swell new book, Girl Power, is about the history and culture of female rockers.
Hunter Stephenson: Following the press screening for The Runaways, I was surprised to hear you loved the film. Having written a book on the legacies and challenges of females in punk, rock, and pop music from the ’70s onward, what real insight does the movie offer on the subject?
Marisa Meltzer: I guess I should admit that I’m a person who is very easily entertained. When you throw in platforms, teenage makeout sessions, and The Stooges on the soundtrack, I’m willing to overlook the film’s flaws. And there are certainly flaws: too much exposition, terrible character development of the other band members, narrative cliches. But I think one important thing to remember is that there really aren’t that many stories being told about women in music—and directed by a woman, no less!—so I’m excited when anyone throws me a bone. I think it’s important for people, especially young women, who might go see The Runaways to realize that girls playing rock music wasn’t always a given, and that their gender was way more of a barrier just a few decades ago than it is now.
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