The Decline of Western Civilization

The Decline of Western Civilization

Part II, The Metal Years

Blu-ray Disc - 2015
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Take a fast-paced look at the Heavy Metal scene of the late 80's.


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Mar 07, 2019

The metal years? More like the glam years - 2 different animals as far as I'm concerned. But the doc does give great insight into the dysfunction of the industry and the culture, especially of the main character...sleaze bag Los Angeles. Watch Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley and gag at the sexual innuendo and double entendres - I dumped KISS when they dumped the make-up. Not even Lemmy can save the doc from its sometimes immaturity. Penelope tries to dig for dirt in her interviews but everyone is too lame or stoned to come up with an intelligent insight. The film is a small piece to a LA rock n roll puzzle - it makes you reach out for more films and books to get a better narrative. Would love to see "The Decline of..." part 3 - the grunge years?

Jun 04, 2018

Wow, what an awesome time capsule! When I come to Vancouver, punk was in its hey dey, and I dimly remember dancing to bands like these and what a blast it was; this doc captures that "madness".

Jan 12, 2018

Truly assinine! Not the film, but the fact that it is only carried on Blue-ray. The predominant artifact from the important' 79-'80 LA punk scene that changed everything in music. Too bad you can't see it unless you have BLUE-RAY! Really stupid.

Feb 19, 2017

Though DWC Part 2 Metal Years is an improvement in film making from the first, it will be a disappointment to metal fans. The Metal Years is almost entirely focused on metal "hair bands". If you liked Part 1 Punk, you might want to skip ahead to Part 3 (which in my opinion is the best of the three)

C20T11 May 17, 2016


Jan 08, 2016

Excellent document of the Los Angeles punk scene in 1979/80 directed by Penelope Spheeris. Features Black Flag, The Germs, X, Circle Jerks and more.

Nov 25, 2015

"Darby, pick up the mic!"
A seminal documentary about L.A.'s punk scene that was unavailable on DVD until recently. I watched clips of it on YouTube and I'm sure the difficulty of tracking it down increased its cult status. Directed by Penelope Spheeris, this is an immersive look at both the music and the cultural of the early 80s punks, including X, Big Black, Germs, Alice Bag Band, and Circle Jerks. Spheeris immersed herself in their world and let's the musicians talk quite a bit. Given that the mainstream press ignored, misunderstood, or lambasted these bands, it's a rare look at how punk is not just music, but a lifestyle defiantly at odds with middle class life and values. And then there's the performance footage, which is amazing. Mostly playing in dingy clubs, there's little distance between band and audience and an aggressive energy that sometimes turns violence. Black Flag, led by guitarist Greg Ginn, were the trailblazers, and they 're seen her with a pre-Henry Rollins line-up. Catholic Discipline and Alice Bag Band, perhaps the most obscure acts, are a little artier and more avant-garde. Germs, led by the self-destructive Darby Crash, who died of a Heroin overdose at 22, are always on the verge of collapse and come off as more demented performance art than band. Fear seem like the most legitimately violence and sociopathic of the bands, berating their audience with a litany of obscenity and slurs. Not coincidentally, their music is the most thuggish and least interesting. X has always been my favorite of this period both because they were the best songwriters and because they drew on a larger pool of influences, including rockabilly, early rock and roll, and even country. This reissued DVD includes extended interviews, bonus performance footage, and the trailer. Followed by the much sillier "Metal Years." PS-Spheeris would later direct "Wayne's World."


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