Tuesday, January 22, 2013
JOE STRUMMER: THE FUTURE IS UNWRITTEN by Julien Temple (UK/Ire, 2007)
I taped this almost two hour documentary film about The Clash's legendary lead singer JOE STRUMMER the other day and watched it tonight. I must admit I was never a great fan of The Clash, sure "London Calling" is great and so is "This is England" but I much disliked the LP "Sandinista" (a triple LP no less) when it came out and since it was my introduction to the band it kinda mandated my feelings towards the band (not even sure I still got the record). But THE FUTURE IS UNWRITTEN is a cool film and it tells Strummer's story all the way from the (his) beginning. There are old interview bits on top of old footage and there's comments from a lot of old friends, both famous and not famous at all (and there are quite a few well known faces that pop up in old footage but that aren't interviewed).
Director Julien Temple has done a lot of music videos but personally I remember him for his earlier (and great) documentary on The Sex Postols, THE FILTH AND THE FURY. I taped the film off the joint French/German channel ARTE TV and most of the dialogue is voiced over in German but altho this is a well made documentary I'm not so sure I'll bother to plunk down the dough for a DVD. This TV print will do. Highly recommended if you're a CLASH fan or just wish to watch a good doc on alternative music history.
The above screen grab is from Alex Cox's STRAIGHT TO HELL that Joe Strummer is in. I've only watched the film once, in 1988 at a "Punk all night" all-nighter at London's old and long gone Scala Cinema Club. What I didn't realise till tonight is that Courtney Love is in the film! It was the last film at the all-nighter and I have absolutely NO recollection the story other that some people walking in the desert. The other films were REPO MAN, DOGS IN SPACE and... hmm, I forget the last one.