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ANVIL THE STORY OF ANVIL, 2009
Movie Review

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ANVIL THE STORY OF ANVIL MOVIE POSTER
ANVIL! THE STORY OF ANVIL, 2009
Movie Reviews

Directed by Sasha Gervasi
Starring: Tiziana Arrigoni, Kevin Goocher, Glenn Gyorffy, William Howell, Steve 'Lips' Kudlow
Review by Martyn Warren



SYNOPSIS:

At 14, best friends Robb Reiner and Lips made a pact to rock together forever. Their band, Anvil, hailed as the "demi-gods of Canadian metal, " influenced a musical generation that includes Metallica, Slayer, and Anthrax, despite never hitting the big time. Following a calamitous European tour, Lips and Robb, now in their fifties, set off to record their 13th album in one last attempt to fulfill their boyhood dreams.

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REVIEW:

This is Spinal Tap (dir. Rob Reiner) was the film that had always been seen as the ultimate celebration of the rock ní roll music genre by cinemagoers for the past twenty-five years. After all this time, Anvil! The Story of Anvil (dir. Sacha Gervasi) has finally delivered what audiences have been waiting for and the respect the director has for the band shines through that results in a rocking, but touching film.

The film starts with archive footage of a big rock ní roll event in Japan during the 1980s and helped to launch successful careers for most of the bands playing on that particular event, including White Snake and Bon Jovi. Interviews with different bandsí members are cut in the opening scene, saying how much one particular band, Anvil, was their source of inspiration and how their contribution in the music industry is respectable.

Despite the amount of fans Anvil has received since then, the band have never gotten their big break and the film focuses on the founders, Steve ĎLipsí Kudlow and Robb Reiner, as they continue on getting their deserved rock star status while at the ages of fifty.

Sacha Gervasi has chosen a great team of crew members and made brilliant choices in all of the departments, including the camera work that portrays the men respectfully and making the locations looking very beautiful and the editors who put the right scenes and shots in great places of the filmís time length. One person that deserves to be mentioned in this review is David Norland, who made some very peaceful and uplifting original music for the film, which helps to make the film more emotionally, involved with Robb and Steve.

The film is edited in three focus points: the passion and journey of the bandís progression, individual lifestyles and their friendship. Splitting the film in these three points of focus really helps to break down the film and show how the scenes are involved with each other, rather then just simply showing these different scenes one after another.

During the bandís European tour, the film shows just how much Anvil has inspired the many bands of the rock ní roll music genre, with members from the likes of Thin Lizzy, Cactus and Scorpion, as well as having fans from the 1980s attending. But the lack of promotions and advertisements results in the band facing situations that are tragically comedic. After the disappointment of the tour, they continue to try and make the big time, with the recording attempt of their thirteenth album and attempting to get a big record label.

In between the sequences of the band, we then focus on the separate lives of Steve and Robb as they go through their daily jobs to help support their families and the audience explores their own history of how they first got into music and their relationships with the family. It is these scenes that help to bring an understanding of what the two are going through to help support their families and the continuing desire of making their band a big name.

The friendship between the two men is a very strong bond and is the main focus point out of the whole film since their friendship and belief of the band are still as strong as they were in the eighties. Throughout the film, their friendship is always facing challenges and results in either funny or dramatic situations, from an argument in a recording studio to the two men confessing about how they are still trying to achieve their dream at their fifties. These are very emotional sequences of the film and the director obviously wanted the audience to like the two for their passion and determination.

The final verdict of my opinion on Anvil! The Story of Anvil is simply one of the best and most uplifting documentaries in recent years and is a nice change of the modern political documentary film. This is the rock ní roll film everyone will enjoy and one where critics and reviewers alike have all fell in love with.


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