Docs That Rock

ANVIL more popular than Hannah Montana

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Believe that hard-to-believe headline. According to indieWIRE the LA and NY debut of ANVIL: The Story of Anvil! grossed $34,800 from its three screens this weekend, the best per-theater-average of any other release, including overall box office champ Hannah Montana: The Movie. (I realize now that this weekend will pit me against my daughters for movie choices.) Obviously, Anvil has a long way to go to infiltrating pop culture as much as Hannah Montana…but its starting! Theaters nationwide are noticing the film’s popularity and may be picking it up soon.

Check out the highlights from the LA premiere in the clip above as well as these amazing reviews:

  • USA Today: “a comical-tearjerker documentary”
  • Entertaintment Weekly: “hilarious and unexpected moving”
  • The New Yorker: “The most stirring release of the year thus far…the emotion that swept the cinema, at the climax, seemed unanimous, binding, and true: pretty much all that we ask of a movie.”
  • Village Voice: “phenomenal rockumentary…a Hoop Dreams for heshers”
  • New York Times: “There is also a kind of sincerity that can seem to the jaded eye like self-parody, and the earnest, heartfelt striving of the two men at the center of Anvil makes the band’s story more touching than comical.”
  • LA Times: (I’m going to quote this from length because it shows what the movie faced in this climate that’s not friendly to indie cinema): “None of the major distributors would touch us,” [director Sasha] Gervasi says. “Fear had set in. Gone were the days of big documentaries like ‘Bowling for Columbine’ and ‘March of the Penguins.’ Every screening had a standing ovation, and distributors were saying, ‘This is an impossible movie to sell.’ We had two bullets in the head — one, that we were a documentary, and two, that it was about music.”
    As weeks turned into months, Gervasi started to worry that maybe art was imitating life just a little too much: Just as Anvil had never taken off, so too was his movie fated to be almost famous? “Did I get stressed out? Yes. Did I start to lose hope? No,” Gervasi says.

    Keep hope alive – see this film when it gets to your town!


    April 14, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized |

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