(director/writer: Andrea Blaugrund Nevins; cinematographer: Geoffrey Franklin; editor: Geoffrey Franklin; cast: Jim Lindberg; Runtime: 100; MPAA Rating: R; producer: Cristan Reilly; Oscilloscope Pictures; 2011)

The film’s twist is in showing the survival first anti-establishment punk rockers as awesome dads.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

A nicely packaged punk rock documentary about some top-flight LA aging bad boys turning forty and finding themselves fathers of young children and unable to still be the rebels they once were even if their music still rocks. It’s mainly seen through the eyes of world-weary lead singer of Pennywise, Jim Lindberg, whose anthem is “Fuck Authority.” The Southern California native, after nineteen years with the high-energy group, can’t handle the long tours on the road anymore and by the end of the film quits the band to stay home with his wife and three daughters and be a better dad rather than a better rocker.

DirectorAndrea Blaugrund Nevins has a sweet-tooth for Lindberg and the other aging punker dads interviewed and shown bonding with their kids and trying not to make the same mistakes their dads did of either abandoning them or treating them like shit. The rockers include the following ‘who’s who’ in the LA punk scene: Mark Hoppus (Blink-182), Tim McIlrath (Rise Against), Ron Reyes (Black Flag), Duane Peters (U.S. Bombs),Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers), Rob Chaos (Total Chaos), Tony Adolescent (Adolescents), Joe Escalante (Vandals), Art Alexakis (Everclear), Fat Mike (NOFX), Lars Frederiksen (Rancid), Josh Freese (Devo), Matt Freeman (Rancid), Jack Grisham (T.S.O. L), Brett Gurewitz (Bad Religion), Tony Hawk (Pro Skater), Rick Thorne (Pro BMXer) and others.

The film’s twist is in showing the survival first anti-establishment punk rockers as awesome dads, something you wouldn’t expect if you judged them solely by their ‘in your face’ confrontational music that sounds “like a rock going through a window” or their appearance which calls for body tats, piercings and a weird look that makes them not fit into society or by their frequent use of the usual F word that’s not father. Though the pic leaves a good message about being a good parent being one’s most important job and perhaps the best way to make a better world, I still found myself not taken with how the dads handled not living a punk lifestyle they professed to onstage to their fans. If honesty and not money is what they say their music is about, something seems amiss by this deception–when it seems clear to me their music should have changed to what’s currently in their hearts before we can say everything is kosher.At the conclusion we’re left wondering if the punk rockers who hang on forever can’t help selling out and if forty year old men should still sing songs about jerking off. What the film failed to do was bring up the usual drug scene around rockers, the sex scene on the road, any interviews with wives or much else that is intimate that doesn’t have the rockers slobbering over being dads.

REVIEWED ON 10/27/2011 GRADE: B-  https://dennisschwartzreviews.com/