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Detroit Rock City (1999)
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Review Date: August 18, 1999
Director: Adam Rifkin
Writer: Carl V. Dupre
Producers: Gene Simmons, Kathleen Haase
Actors:
Edward Furlong
Sam Huntington
James DeBello
Giuseppe Andrews
Lin Shaye
Plot:
Set in the late 70s, four wryly teenage boys spend an entire day and night trying to get to Detroit to attend a KISS concert. On their way, they are led astray by various obstacles including Elvis the hall monitor, the church-loving mom, Disco geeks and their own stupidity. Rock 'n roll music burns throughout.
Critique:
I had a blast at this movie!!! This is a fast-paced, rock 'n roll soundtrack-induced joyride of nostalgia, hilarity, camera tricks and fun times! I loved this movie the whole way through, starting with its wonderful collage of 70s memorabilia credits, the plentitude of references and in-jokes to all things from that time period, the dead-on performances from all of its stars, and of course, its satisfyingly predictable finale. I laughed a lot during this movie, but I was also entranced by the plight of these kids. I don't think I've ever seen anyone so determined to get anything in my entire movie-going life! Anyone who's ever had to fight for something they badly wanted, should be able to relate to these bad-lucked geeks.

And yes, I also loved the filming style of director Adam Rifkin which went way over-the-top but managed to mushroom into a perfect match to the rock music, the "we don't give a fuck" attitude, and all of the wonderfully cartoonish characters. I'll admit that nostalgia surely had a hand to play in my over-exuberance for this movie, and maybe I'm just a sucker for shit, dope and puke jokes, but there was definitely more to this picture than just those simple factors. All of the actors played their parts flawlessly with the mom (Lin Shaye) and pothead friend Trip (James DeBello) standing a little above the rest. The soundtrack was superb, with a constant stream of songs from the 70s bursting through the background. The settings were also ideal, with the little touches certifying much authenticity, and more than anything, the enjoyable, self-mocking style, along with the fun-loving plight of the youngsters, made this movie an all-around good time. Much like a moving comic book.

As you can see, the band KISS is not really a major player in this movie...more like the goal. Now I may be going out on a limb here, but I predict that this film will find its success in the realm of cult film status. Natch.
(c) 2014 Berge Garabedian
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10:34PM on 08/13/2007

Woo!

One of my top favorite films. You can watch it over and over and it never gets old. Edward Furlong who plays Hawk, and Sam Huntington who plays Jam are my two favorites. Great soundtrack as well! Great review Jo, I completely agree. Definitely giving it a 9/10 though! Rock on! :)
One of my top favorite films. You can watch it over and over and it never gets old. Edward Furlong who plays Hawk, and Sam Huntington who plays Jam are my two favorites. Great soundtrack as well! Great review Jo, I completely agree. Definitely giving it a 9/10 though! Rock on! :)
Your Reply:



9:27AM on 10/31/2006

YES

I love this movie to death! It's just damned fun and the soundtrack is amazing! I'm a sucker for these kinds of films so this is a huge guilty pleasure.

8/10
I love this movie to death! It's just damned fun and the soundtrack is amazing! I'm a sucker for these kinds of films so this is a huge guilty pleasure.

8/10
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