Punk ‘n’ Pie

Image of PunkHats off to the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Cinematèk once again for their upcoming Punk ‘n’ Pie film series, which looks to be an amazing retrospective focusing predominantly on the UK Punk/New Wave scene (a majority of them I haven’t yet seen, and I’m particularly interested in the November 23rd double-feature). Damn, the BAM consistently puts together film programs that are so good that I find myself sometimes toying with the idea of becoming a blood sucking stock broker or a soulless real estate agent so I can simply afford to live closer to the BAM, the compromise of everything I hold dear would almost seem worth it for film programming like this. Truth be told, I will sell my soul for a good cinema experience!

I have reproduced the schedule below with selected availabel film clips and trailers for each of the films. Doing this makes the pain seem a little less depressed as I come to terms with the fact that I can’t go and see these films in a theater on glorious 35 mm with a face full of popcorn.

Breaking Glass (1980)
Fri, Nov 21 at 2, 4:30, 6:50, 9:15pm

24 Hour Party People (2002)
Sat, Nov 22 at 4:45, 7, 9:30pm

Reggae in a Babylon (1979)
Sun, Nov 23 at 4:30, 9:15pm

Rough Cut and Ready Dubbed (1982)
Sun, Nov 23 at 2, 6:50pm

Jubilee (1977)
Wed, Nov 26 at 4:30, 6:50, 9:15pm

Joe Strummer: The Future is Unwritten (2007)
Thu, Nov 27 & Fri, Nov 28 at 2, 4:30, 7, 9:30pm
Trailer (Why can’t we embed this trailer—not very punk rock, eh?).

Joy Division (2007)
Sat, Nov 29 at 4:30, 9:15pm

Urgh! A Music War (1980)
Sat, Nov 29 at 2, 6:50pm
Clip from Urgh! A Music War featuring Joan Jett’s “Bad Reputation” (what’s up with the no embedding?)

Sid and Nancy (1986)
Sun, Nov 30 at 4:30, 9:15pm

Depeche Mode 101 (1989)
Sun, Nov 30 at 2, 6:50pm

Now, if we were to program a North American-based Punk film retrospective, what would the films be?

Here are my picks:
Rock ‘n’ Roll High School (1979)

Times Square (1980)

The Decline of Western Civilization (1981)

Basket Case (1982)

Another State of Mind (1982)

Class of 1984 (1982)

Valley Girl (1983)

Suburbia (1984)

Repo Man (1984)

The Year Punk Broke (1991)

That’s what I have off the top of my head, what am I missing? For I’m sure there are a ton more.

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7 Responses to Punk ‘n’ Pie

  1. Brad says:

    Officially used more Youtube videos in a single post than I ever have or will, congrats! It will take days & days to go through all of this, but I’m determined to do it.
    Some “punk” favorites of my own:
    SLC Punk! (a little cheesy, but still entertaining)
    Fight Club
    Trainspotting — which, actually, I don’t like very much at all, but it’s definitely a very punk film.
    Instrument — Fugazi documentary that essentially changed the way I thought about things in the music industry & punk ethics.

    Dang, you’re right, there have to be hundreds more, I just can’t think of ’em right now. Good realm to explore though, without a doubt.

  2. Sebastian6 says:

    Damn. That’s a good schedule. I own a copy of Urgh!, which is out-of-print and keep going back to it every couple years. What a great mix of styles- OMD to Klaus Nomi to Echo & the Bunnymen to Fear. You don’t get mixtures like that anymore.

    I think the ultimate L.A. punk film is “Decline of Western Civilization.” What an amazing movie. It made me fall in love with X and understand the Circle Jerks. It’s interesting to see how these folks were really doing the same things British Squatters were doing. Who knew a cornerstone of the punk ideal is communal living? The strange schizophrenia of the I-dont-give-a-shit attitude mixed with the need for community is fascinating to watch. Darby Crash at home with his woman making dinner encapsulates that whole idea.

    I stumbled on this clip from YouTube the other day and enjoyed it very much:

    (guess we can’t embed hehehe) – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c0IZdP3x66Y

    ps. I’m glad to see an actual documentary on Joy Division, probably my 2nd favorite band of all time. The dramatic film “Control” had its moments but lacked any sort of impact by simply being intolerably long and BORING.

  3. Two great lists. Really interesting how British focused they are — it reminds me of the differences.

    The ultimate commentary on US Punk is Repo Man, hands down. I don’t know if it’s the ultimate punk film, too self-aware really to be that. But it captures the punk culture in America brilliantly. It reminds me that the ultimate attribute of the punk is a tendency to be easily bored.

    I agree with Brad that one film missing from either list is SLC Punk, which I thought was a great capturing of third-tier city punk — it felt very much like people I knew, more than any other punk film I’ve seen. And yeah, a but cheesy, but I’ll admit it hooked me emotionally pretty good.

  4. Jared Stein says:

    “Rock N Roll High School” has always held a special place in my heart.

    “Repo Man”, too, is a killer killer film.

    Mike mentioned “SLC Punk” but I thought that film was boring.

  5. @jared — Ha! maybe not interesting to someone in the area? Or maybe it was just a thing.

    The documentary Made In Sheffield should also be on these lists.

  6. Mikhail says:

    I’d add the Minutemen doc, We Jam Econo, X: The Unheard Music and Raymond Pettibon’s bizarre Weatherman ’69 starring Kim Gordon, Thurston Moore, and Mike Watt (just because I want to see it).

  7. Andy Best says:

    This may seem way out of left-field. Growing up in the UK and then traveling in Asia all the time I hadn’t really seen a lot of American Indie Cinema.

    One of the most Punk experiences I ever had was when I stumbled upon a Troma Film called “Tromeo and Juliet” on DVD here a couple of years back. This comment is more about the spirit of punk as opposed to any movement.

    Anyhow, as I watched the movie I felt like the entire cast and crew were slapping me around the whole time. Amazing.

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