Saturday, August 1, 2015
Structured around the earliest existing, previously unseen footage of The Clash—shot by Temple—performing at London’s landmark Roxy club on January 1, 1977, this dynamic documentary imparts both the cynicism and hope for real change that the impending punk movement so fervently believed in. Recordings of the band just hanging out together are intercut with samples of the laughably glib BBC programming that ran on New Year’s Eve, Hogmanay, and New Year’s Day—it’s immediately apparent that nothing would be the same after punk’s annus mirabilis. Featuring Mick Jones’s Bruce Lee impersonation and a cameo by Johnny Rotten!
Never Mind the Baubles: Christmas with the Sex Pistols
Julien Temple, UK, 1977, digital projection, 60m
A highly digressive—and enjoyable—documentary about the Sex Pistols’ benefit for striking firemen and their families in Huddersfield on Christmas Day, 1977. At the time, the band had such a terrible reputation that they had been banned from playing any venue in the U.K., and with their subsequent, disastrous U.S. tour, they completely imploded; this concert was, in many ways, their final great achievement and perfectly emblematic of punk values. Temple’s film incorporates contemporary interviews with the band and audience members, a variety of found footage, and clips from the concert itself to discuss the event and its historical significance.