4 Stars
Year Released: 2001
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 80 minutes
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There’s a same-ness to rockumentaries. Pretty much all of them capture high-powered live performances along with the backstage excesses of musical stars. That description fits just about any rock doc. The quality varies, of course, but ultimately, unless you’re a fan of the subject, these films either sink or soar.
“Friends Forever” documents the musical duo of drummer/vocalist Nate and his partner, bassist/keyboardist Josh. Now this group of never-beens may not seem so special, until you discover that their performances play out more like musical crimes against mankind. Nate and Josh travel the country playing gigs out of their van and use a bubble maker, smoke machine, dangerous fireworks and a light show to compliment their experimental tunes. In fact, they refuse to play traditional musical venues and prefer to risk incarceration by disrupting the neighborhoods they invade. Stunned audiences either sit mesmerized or get out of the way of their spontaneous concerts.
Filmmaker Ben Wolfinsohn follows the duo on their tour across America and his camera captures every key moment from their hilarious gigs, to the personal conflicts, to their scary groupies, and even their college radio appearances. All of this is made even more hysterical when you realize that this is not “This is Spinal Tap” or a mockumentary – this is real.
In the end, these two make the antics of punk rocker G.G. Allin look like Martha Stewart’s cooking show. “Friends Forever” makes for a truly entertaining rock doc, whether you’re a fan of the music or not.

Posted on March 11, 2001 in Reviews by

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