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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 41.54%
Average: 3.08%
Pretty Bad: 0%
Total Crap: 1.54%

5 reviews, 35 user ratings

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Hard Core Logo
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by Brian McKay

"It's Not 'Spinal Tap', and it's not trying to be"
4 stars

Why is it that every time someone tries to make a fictional documetary-style film about a rock band (a mockrockumentary, if you will), everyone compares it to "Spinal Tap"? Look, I love Spinal Tap, but not every movie about a rock band is comparable to that film. It's the same annoying trend of calling every new brit comedy "This years's `The Full Monty'".

Well, unlike lesser-caliber films like "Still Crazy", "Hard Core Logo" isn't trying to be Spinal Tap and has been unfairly compared to such (although they do make reference to Rob Reiner's opus in one scene). This is not to say it isn't a funny film, because it often is. But this should not be percieved as a comedy, but rather a dark look at the turbulent reunion of the titular failed punk band.

The main characters are mohawked lead singer "Joe Dick" (Hugh Dillon, who steals the show in all respects), and pretty-boy guitar player Billy Talent (Callum Keith Rennie). Dick, the leader of the defunct punk band Hard Core Logo, has reunited all the original members for a brief 6-show tour across Canada. There are plenty of revelations by and about the band members, and a bizarre string of setbacks and misadventures along the way. The film will have you laughing several times, often in that "should I really be laughing at this?" kind of way.

Canadian Director Bruce McDonald keeps the pace brisk and the visuals sharp and intriguing. The flow feels natural, and the camera crew, rather than a detached third party, become increasingly intrusive and even set the band at odds in order to create more drama on film. Their involvement peaks when they drop acid along with the band, resulting in an impromptu orgy of chainsaws, goat heads, and blood drinking.

Like the best "mockumentaries", this often feels like the real thing, unlike the obvious parody that was "Spinal Tap". This would make it more comparable to "Blair Witch", if anything, including the appropriately grim ending.

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originally posted: 06/28/02 09:39:18
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OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2005 Sydney Film Festival For more in the 2005 Sydney Film Festival series, click here.

User Comments

7/16/10 Issac Maez Best movie I've seen with one of the coolest chicks I ever knew 5 stars
6/21/09 cate for five years of my life, i don't think i went more then a week w/o seeing this movie 5 stars
4/27/07 Disco Jim I never wanted to see this movie and after I did I couldn't believe how good it was. 5 stars
3/06/07 suzy Brilliant, poignant study of a man's desperate attempt to regain the two loves of his life 5 stars
12/11/05 TNTO One of the finest movies I've ever seen, with and ending that simply floors you. 5 stars
7/23/05 Duggo* What spinal tap and SLC punk could only dream to bare as offspring 5 stars
12/15/04 toshia murray i loved this movie its one of my favorites! 5 stars
10/05/04 Jackie This was almost totally scripted? Bruce and the boys get it all terribly right. 5 stars
6/26/04 Scott HCL was (for what it is) the best film I've seen in a long while. 5 stars
6/09/04 Mr. X A bore 1 stars
1/25/03 Empress of Misrule Hugh Dillon and Callum Keith Rennie are gods. Nuff said! 5 stars
11/07/02 hindsight brilliantly raw, kickass epic! dillon is awesome. *check out* kickass band! 5 stars
8/17/02 roby fabolous 5 stars
8/13/02 Ryan Damn good movie 5 stars
8/07/02 Michael Garrett This, the 2nd installment in Bruce McDonald's "Rock & Road Trilogy" is brilliant !! 5 stars
7/30/02 Shayheyred Relentless and brilliant. Waves of charisma from leads Dillon and Rennie 5 stars
7/27/02 Max Platinum Gripping from start to finish, no low spots 4 stars
4/28/02 Dickie Best ending I have seen. Great acting, dark humour! Trip scene great! 5 stars
4/14/02 The Bomb69 eh, I don't see what all the fuss is about, not real funny 3 stars
11/30/01 door **thud** own this film. you must own this film. this film will fuck you over. 5 stars
11/02/01 Mark Ziebinski Brilliant funny unfuckingbelievable!! 5 stars
6/17/01 Mongi Elegant 5 stars
6/02/01 yep yep 5 stars
5/06/01 Fionnuala Worth watching a few times, here be layers 5 stars
4/20/01 mohd fahmee ismail nothing,just ok! 3 stars
3/27/01 k cletheroe cool movie 5 stars
2/28/01 chrystal this movie is fucked up, if you havent seen it get up off your ass and see it u fuck!! 5 stars
1/05/01 Caitlin Shaw It's so raw it hurts -- especially if you don't know how it ends 5 stars
4/28/00 Jon Cleaver This film is simply brilliant! See at any cost 5 stars
12/07/99 Joe James Hard hitting, emotionally raw and beautiful. A classic! 5 stars
11/14/98 Rick Switzer A pretty accurate depiction of band life 5 stars
11/13/98 Lord Of The Dunce If you can handle the music and get the comedy, this is a fucking great film. Hilarious. 5 stars
8/28/98 Mister Whoopee The greatest rock'n'roll road movie since Easy Rider. Funny as hell. See this film!! 5 stars
8/13/98 Pete Amazing flick. Makes 'Spinal Tap' look like a pile of puke. 4 stars
8/13/98 {{OZ}} Great punk road movie. Sound sucks, but it's way cool. 4 stars
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  13-Nov-1998 (R)
  DVD: 25-Jan-2005


  02-May-1998 (M)

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