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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 21.95%
Average: 10.98%
Pretty Bad: 12.2%
Total Crap: 21.95%

4 reviews, 58 user ratings

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Detroit Rock City
[] Buy posters from this movie
by Erik Childress

"The Ultimate Sellout"
1 stars

Detroit Rock City (*) Ė Good tunes are good tunes, whether it be disco or rock or KISS. That is what one of the characters says about halfway through Detroit Rock City Ė and I would tend to agree despite my abhoration of certain music genres. Dennis Miller said thatís why there were four solo KISS albums to choose from. One manís Ace Frehley is anotherís Peter Criss.

I donít know much about KISS and their music. I only know what I read about when I was five years old and they were still around, and the recent Psycho Circus reunion tour that they embarked on. I canít say Iím a big fan nor do I place them anywhere near my hate list, but from what Iíve heard, KISS is always most remembered for the live shows they put on. Their music isnít any more unique than your average hard rock band but they put on one hell of a concert. Which begs one to question, why KISS just do another live concert movie instead of selling out to a rancorous piece of celluloid like this. And yes Ė I said sellout and Iíll say it again. Sellout. This is not a true KISS movie, but rather a movie that uses KISS as a Macguffin for the four guys to go on their little adventure of fights, losing virginity, drugs, drinking and projectile vomiting. I havenít seen the playlist on the filmís CD soundtrack, but in the film, Iíd bet that 2 out of every 3 songs played in a non-KISS number. Whatís the point? I counted 2 songs by AC/DC and one by Van Halen Ė but I donít think thereís more than a half dozen songs by KISS in the whole movie. KISS fans should be pissed. This is like the 90ís version of Robert Zemeckisí directorial debut I Wanna Hold Your Hand, where a bunch of young people did whatever they could to see the Beatles. Now Iím not a Beatles fan (please Ė hold your stones), but that film had more originality and more heart than anything in Detroit Rock City. To show you the lack of originality of the filmís script - one of the guyís love interests is named Beth. How subtle. The film doesnít go very far to convince me of the atmosphere of the 70s. After the pre-title sequence reintroducing us to 8-tracks and turntables and a title sequence of numerous (if not chronological) pop culture artifacts of the decade, the rest of the film could have been set today. The one kidís mom (played by Lin Shaye who was the landlady in Kingpin and Magda in Thereís Something About Mary) comes off as a cross between Piper Laurie in Carrie and Mrs. Broflofski (Kyleís mom on South Park), preaching about the satanic aspects of the group KISS. Lucky for us, this topic was done and realized more fully in this summerís South Park movie. That movie explored (hilariously) the effects that entertainment can have on children whose parents are too busy protesting the very same entertainment. Detroit Rock City uses four unlikable characters (one of them blatantly trying to be drug dealer Jay from the Kevin Smith movies) to give toilet humor a bad name again. This is the kind of movie that American Pie could have been, but succeeded in part to good writing and very likable characters. Why do films like this always make their heroes big potheads and, on the same note, why do they keep casting Edward Furlong in anything? These guys are unsympathetic, uninteresting, and terribly unfunny. Maybe this is a movie for people high on pot. Maybe only then will you find the movie and its characters funny. Then again, when youíre high on pot Ė isnít pretty much anything funny? Whoever thought that the site of B-movie goddess Shannon Tweed (a.k.a. Mrs. Gene Simmons) would spice up interest in the movie. At least it did for me. And Mr. Tongue must be so proud (as co-producer of this film) to have his wife having to pay for sex from Edward Furlong of all people. If the movie had any credibility whatsoever, it lost it at this point. Gene Simmons said in a press release that itís like these kids are on a journey for the Holy Grail. Well, if KISS is the metaphorical Holy Grail, then why canít the film suggest to us why exactly KISS was so great. If they were so popular, why? The mano-a-mano battle of the music world in this film comes down to the bold suggestion that KISS was a lot better than disco. Big stretch.

In this film you either an adult and like music like The Carpenters, or youíre young and you either like disco or KISS. Kinda makes you glad at the plethora of music choices we have today, no matter how much crap is out there. I mean, after all, good tunes are good tunes.

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originally posted: 02/15/00 14:36:14
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User Comments

5/26/11 Rosie The funniest and best movie ever created.. also turend me into a KISS fan 5 stars
6/18/09 Dane Youssef A fun enough throwback to an era and a look at a timeless, universal time of life. 4 stars
8/05/07 Talissa This changed my view in music! Rock On! 5 stars
7/11/07 MikeR Not as good as Kiss fighting phantoms in the amusement park epic. 3 stars
5/26/07 fools♫gold Has that same average feel of "A Life Less Ordinary". 3 stars
2/26/07 jessica This movie was amazing. Edward furlong is hot. 5 stars
11/29/06 David Pollastrini best scene is KISS performance at the end 2 stars
11/08/06 Mariah I FRIGGIN LOVE THIS MOVIE!!!! 5 stars
3/14/06 Suzi I love this movie. Always makes me laugh . 5 stars
10/20/05 matt im not even a KISS fan but this movie rocks 5 stars
9/04/05 nikki I love it luv it ! and I love kiss! 5 stars
9/02/05 ES I laughed quite a bit & bought it for my uncle a big KISS fan 5 stars
8/08/05 noelle Rockin' Movie! Loved it! 5 stars
8/01/05 Fred Why do people like this shit? WORST FILM EVER 1 stars
7/26/05 robbieplant Rocked out of this world! 5 stars
7/18/05 Brandy Harrington An awful movie! But whadda expect from a band like KISS?!?!? 1 stars
6/09/05 me a shitty movie about a shitty band. 1 stars
1/15/05 Jeff Anderson The best movie about KISS ever made, I kid you not. Director Adam Rifkin RULES! 5 stars
12/03/04 Abby Snyder Really FUnny 5 stars
11/28/04 Camrin I disagree Greatly with all the comments that were said about this movie! I loved it! 5 stars
8/21/04 J An awesome rock movie!!! 5 stars
2/09/04 pyrosk8brdr9 THIS MOVIE IS KICKING JUST LIKE KISS 5 stars
9/18/03 Samuel Justus It seems like i could watch this movie over and over! 5 stars
7/03/03 Lush Arse kissing wank. KISS can suck my balls! 2 stars
4/14/03 Jack Sommersby Pretty good fun. 4 stars
12/29/02 Akio A lot of good laugh for the man of age 46. 4 stars
12/28/02 Louise Eddie Furlong, you rock baby! 5 stars
8/08/02 I Can't Swim Those who like the band are too old to like the movie 1 stars
4/30/02 katie i'm not a kiss fan, but this is one of my all-time fave movies!! i could watch it everyday. 5 stars
2/24/02 Jenny Tullwartz Thought Lin Shaye could'nt get more insufferable than in SOMETHING ABOUT MARY, but she does 2 stars
1/26/02 Andrew Carden If The Movie Was About 70's Disco [Not Hard Rock], It Would Have Been Watchable. 1 stars
11/12/01 Melissa This is the best movie 5 stars
8/08/01 Mr. Hat Mean-spirited, but awesome. 4 stars
3/29/01 TheRock see it for the kickass soundtrack 5 stars
3/05/01 Scarlett I LOVED THIS MOVIE especially cuz Lex (Giuseppe Andrews) is super hot!!!!! 5 stars
2/07/01 the?girl not a fan of spew jokes, but laughed at most bits. 3 stars
1/16/01 Manda Kane Detroit Rock City is the best movie I have ever seen I love it and I love Jam!!!!!! 5 stars
1/02/01 J in TN wonderful film; fantastic DVD -- captures the period perfectly--I know; I was there. A+++ 4 stars
8/17/00 unholy1965 I`m a mad kiss fan and I thought it was goodit shows whata kiss fan will do to see them 5 stars
7/11/00 Bender The first half is full of bad jokes, but the second half is funny and entertainiing. 3 stars
6/28/00 Elvisfan It was OK. A laugh or two. Natasha Lyonne is always worth seeing 4 stars
5/21/00 perverted pixie Kiss suck!- but this is a really charming no-brainer 4 stars
4/24/00 Ryan i am not a fan of teenage wasteland movies... but KISS is one of the best bands alive... 3 stars
4/13/00 Cleatus The Slack Jawed Yokel It was good, even though KISS sucks 4 stars
3/06/00 Kyle Broflovski Kept me suitably entertained while waiting for a phone call... 3 stars
2/21/00 arnold funny at best 3 stars
2/14/00 toneely i loved this was so funny 5 stars
1/24/00 arnold pretty damn funny kiss sucks though 4 stars
12/09/99 Lincoln Read For KISS fans only 4 stars
9/17/99 Kory I'm a big KISS fan but must admit this movie is pretty lame 2 stars
9/16/99 Ratso God, I want to have sex with Shannon Tweed. 3 stars
9/11/99 Timbo Wow anyone can get laid at a Kiss show 3 stars
9/07/99 Chet Patel I felt ripped off after I saw this piece of shit,and I did not even pay for it. 1 stars
8/27/99 Ah Dooey If you hate this, you're not as tough as you think. Only Spiceworld: The Movie is worse. 5 stars
8/21/99 Vampyre9mm I'm not a big KISS fan, but I dug this movie. Killer Soundtrack!!! 4 stars
8/16/99 danimal i loved this look at the 70's. made me remember a lot! 5 stars
8/16/99 mason a boneheaded classic , in league with meatballs and porkeys (not to mention satan) 5 stars
8/14/99 mara funny even if you're not a KISS mega-fan 4 stars
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  13-Aug-1999 (R)


  02-Dec-1999 (MA)

Directed by
  Adam Rifkin

Written by
  Carl Dupre

  Edward Furlong
  James DeBello
  Sam Huntington
  Giuseppe Andrews
  Lin Shaye

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