An engaging, enjoyable rockumentary on one of history’s most influential (and coolest) bands.
I’m a Gen X-er and my knowledge of seminal Rock band THE STOOGES is purely academic. I wasn’t there when the ball dropped on Rock/Punk during the late 1960s. And like many growing up in the late 70s/early 80s, the 60s seemed an obscure decade of flower power and acid trippy shit. Thankfully, I eventually discovered this IGGY POP fronted band.
Now film auteur Jim Jarmusch offers up the legacy of THE STOOGES for everyone, young and old, in 2016’s ‘Gimme Danger‘. Think of it as the origin story for Rock and Roll after all that trippy shit.
On hand is every living (before 2014) THE STOOGES member along with archive interviews/footage of a host of peripheral personnel/family/friends that had an impact on their career from the late 60s into the early 70s and their “reunification” during the 2000s.
Lots of great stories from now wizened(?) older rockers about their cock-sure bat sh*t crazy young/dumb selves. Mixing concert footage and interviews of all eras with contemporary personal reflections. And plenty of Jarmusch’s trademark oddball wit with some wacky animation and obscure pop-culture inserts to color the film in the sorta anti-label, anti-establishment mantra of this band was known for.
“Iggy Pop is cool!”, period. Despite his out of this world live performance antics (he basically invented the stage dive) THE STOOGES’ vocalist is one of the most grounded, self-aware musicians on the planet. By allowing his pseudo-narration to dictate the flow, Jarmusch’s work is half done.
And, beautifully, nearly every word spoken is of a positive, reflective nature. None of the ugly infighting criticism/bitterness that usually follows bands/musicians after success wanes. Impressive, considering that Iggy was the only member with any true post-STOOGES sustainability.
The only real issue to be had is a shortage of personal insight. Lots of who, when, what, and even a little how, but very little why. With all the fun facts about the influence of THE STOOGES on the entirety of the modern Rock world there’s very little info about the individual members outside of their participation in the band. It’s all (and only) about the music.
If you’re a die-hard Rock/Metal fan you owe it to yourself to watch ‘Gimme Danger‘. This is how it all began. THE STOOGES influenced most all of the best acts of the 70s and 80s before hair-spray and mascara turned everything into trippy shit, once again. Informative, interesting, awesome music, loads of fun, and ever so cool.