Rude Boy

1980

Drama / Music

0
IMDb Rating 6.4 10 1182

punk rock

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Plot summary


Uploaded by: FREEMAN

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Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Quinoa1984 8 / 10

Could've been better, but the concert footage is exquisite

The Clash's Rude Boy is a misguided, exciting and overall decent attempt at capturing the band the Clash at the height of their crossover from punk pioneers (if there could legitimately be called such a thing) to full-blown rock stars in the UK. The story itself surrounding them is perhaps less great than the band itself, which might be expected considering all that can be done in integrating one character into a band through a fictional script. The movie examines an angry youth (Gange) who works in a sex shop, until he meets up with The Clash and becomes their roadie. The story of Gange (and his view of the situation in Britain at the time it was made, with the occasional communist remark or two depending on the perspective of the viewer) is a little confusing and muddled at times.

Yet when the Clash take the stage, which is fairly often, the film is thriving and alive as any concert film in the history of rock movies. Maybe it may appeal more to punk fans from the 70's than the punk fans- or what bunch of posers that try and act hip from their Hot Topic gear- but it's hard not to pass it up as even a casual fan either. Performances include: I'm so Bored with the USA, White Riot, Janie Jones, White man in Hammersmith, and Police and Thieves, among others.

Reviewed by Captain_Couth 7 / 10

Interesting look at life in late 70's England.

Rude Boy (1980) follows the life of a youth who dreams about working for his favorite band THE CLASH. The band THE CLASH co-star in this picture and some of their live performances is caught on film. This movie was made before they made it big across the pond. The band is shown working on their second album GIVE THE ENOUGH ROPE. A colleague of their's John Lydon once said that the Clash didn't know how to pace themselves, they would be tired after the first four or five songs. Well, he was right. Some of the concert footage shows, the band appeared to be sluggish and tired in some of their performances. I heard that the band wasn't happy with the way they were portrayed and neither was the young man who played the wannabe roadie. I found the band to be very interesting and I became a Joe Strummer fan after I saw this movie.

The film-makers also capture the turmoil that was occurring on the streets of London during this time. Their was a lot of rioting and protesting. They also capture the collapse of the Labour Party and the rise of the Conservatives. Another one to seal in a time capsule. Interesting, recommended for Clash fans.

Reviewed by Krustallos 10 / 10

It's not exactly One plus One...

...despite copying the musicians in the studio trope, the porn-shop as symbol of capitalism and the black/white subplot. However "Rude Boy" perhaps deserves a little more attention than it seems to have received.

As a 'proper movie' it's kind of a washout. Aiming for an improvised cinema-verite feel, it's hamstrung by a fatal lack of tension, having apparently been assembled by people with little grasp of editing, narrative or any kind of cinematic style. Despite this, the concert footage of The Clash is indispensable to anyone with an interest in the era, and shows why they were one of the all-time great rock and roll bands. We have very few 70's punk bands recorded properly on film as opposed to video and the difference in quality is striking. Also, Joe Strummer's death is still quite recent as I write and seeing him here in his prime is poignant in the extreme.

In general there are very few film documents of punk. We have Jarman's "Jubilee" which was more of a neo-Elizabethan fantasia, "The Great Rock and Roll Swindle" with its McClarenite rewriting of history and come-lately nonsense like "Breaking Glass". "Rude Boy" at least doesn't fall into any narrative clichés (if only by barely having a plot) and by its very lack of creative flair may succeed best in giving a picture of the time. For example, unlike the myth-making of the likes of "Sid and Nancy", this shows punk gigs as they actually were - largely populated by lads with feather-cuts and tank tops.

By concentrating on hanger-on Gange instead of the band itself, the filmmakers turn the story into one of the relationship between the band and its fan-base - pointed up by having Strummer sing "All The Young Punks" right through in the studio without the backing track to distract us from the lyric.

The commentator who said this did not give a true picture of the politics of the time is surely wrong. I was there and it seems pretty accurate to me. We see the resurgent National Front, the Anti-Nazi League, the bullishness and racism of the police at the time (which would shortly lead to the Brixton riots) and the rise of Thatcherism out of the bankrupt Butskellite consensus. Ray Gange's character in the film seems intended to represent the British white working class at the time - confused, politically disengaged and borderline racist, the attitudes which led to the Thatcher victory we see at the end of the film. The left, variously represented by the SWP (bureaucratic) and Strummer (by turns tokenistic and diffident) fails to capture Gange's imagination and it is the right who seize on the desire for change and turn it to their own advantage.

Rude Boy is a strange curate's egg, then. There may have been a really good film struggling to get out of this morass, but we'll never know. The special edition DVD has a "Just Play the Clash" function which lets you view only the concert footage and I suspect this will get a lot of use.

Rating? 3/10 for the story, 10/10 for the music.

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