Combustible Celluloid
 
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With: Tom Arnold, Dave Foley, Tommy Ramone (Thomas Erdelyi), George Wendt, Dan Zanes, Mark Schwahn, Matt Pinfield, David Carr, Steve Albini, Jeff Corbett, Robert Christgau, the Goo Goo Dolls, Grant Hart, Greg Norton
Written by: Gorman Bechard, Hansi Oppenheimer
Directed by: Gorman Bechard
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Running Time: 123
Date: 03/18/2013
IMDB

Color Me Obsessed: A Film About the Replacements (2011)

3 Stars (out of 4)

Music for Humans

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

My first encounter with The Replacements was on "Saturday Night Live" in 1986, and I thought they were the worst band I'd ever heard. Fortunately, two years later, I was in college and a neighbor in my dormitory told me about the album , and told me I had to hear it. Idid, and it changed my life. It became one of those legendary albums. Iquickly bought and , and I was there to buytheir final two records when they came out. I never got to see themlive, but I did see a Paul Westerberg solo show in 1993.

Now here comes a documentary about the band, and the first thing you should know is that it runs over two hours, contains not one hint of actual Replacements music, and no interviews with any of the band members. (It does contain a few photographs of them, however.) Director Gorman Bechard insists on his commentary track that this was all intentional and had nothing to do with getting turned down by the band or being unable to afford music rights.

What's left is a whole bunch of fans, writers, co-workers, ex-wives, and musicians, talking about how much they love the band, telling crazy stories that may or may not be true. And if you love them as much as I do, then listening to this conversation gets your heart racing. I only wish I could have joined in with a few of my own thoughts and stories.

The Replacements were famous for sucking just as often as they were great, and Bechard can always find someone to defend even their worst choices. The main one is their maligned album , which-- truth be told -- is still in my record collection and still holds upbetter than many other albums from that same year.

I guess the downside to this film is that, if you're not a fan, you'll have no idea what anyone is talking about, especially if interviewees are describing a specific song and there's no song to be heard. There's nothing here to convert newcomers. However, one of the interviewees says that if every living Replacements fan gave a copy of Let It Be to a 15 year-old, there'd be a hundred great new bands tomorrow. Maybe this film will inspire that kind of activity.

The two-disc DVD set, released by MVD, contains two commentary tracks, one by director Gorman Bechard and one by producer Jan Radder. Additionally, there's over an hour of deleted scenes, tons of interview footage, and trailers.

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