Thursday, February 2, 2012

The other "F" Word (2011)

What happens when a punk rocker from the 1980s becomes a father and a family man in the new millennium? Director Andrea Blaugrund explores that very issue. This documentary film interviews a wide variety of punk rockers like Flea, from The Red Hot Chil Peppers, Fat Mike from NOFX, Lars Fredericksen, from Rancid, Art Alexakis from Everclear, even world-famous pro skater, Tony Hawk, among a host of others. The majority of the film however, focuses on punk rock veteran Jim Lindberg, of Pennywise. Married for 21 years, Jim struggles with maintaining his punk image of "anti-authority," while trying to be a husband and father to his three beautiful young daughters. The grueling tour schedule begins to take a toll on Jim, and he decides to make a change.

The film also explores how none of the punk rockers interviewed really got into the music scene to become rich and famous, instead got into it as a way to rebel against authority and "the system." They are all for the most part, far from rich today, and appear to more of a "working class" brand of musician, struggling to make ends meet and raising a family. Lindberg summed it pretty well when he stated that out of necessity, he HAD to make money to support his family. He made money the only way he knew how, and that was with his music. In turn, he found himself becoming a part of "the system" he rebelled against in his youth.

I identified with this film because I am a product of the 1980s myself. I was a huge fan of a lot of the punk rockers interviewed in this short (100 minute) documentary film. It's very interesting to see that these guys are all  human like the rest of us; greying and balding, rapidly approaching or in some cases past the point of middle age.  Most of these punk rockers were raised in broken homes or with absent fathers, and the film shows how they are trying their best to see that their children are raised with love and affection, unlike they were.  Perhaps raising good kids is a better way to change the world instead of rebelling against it.

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