New York Dolls DVD review [MVD]

Film / Video Reviews
New York Dolls DVD review [MVD]
Dec 5, 2006, 04:46


To see one of the best rock and roll bands to ever grace a stage in this brilliant black and white documentary is to see history and why we are here and why then might, just might, have been better than now. Rock shooter royalty Bob Gruen's documentary brings the tale of five inept sleazebags who mange to play perfect snatches of noise tucked not-so-neatly into 3-minute bursts is what it really is all about. And all of the greats managed that—Ramones, Dolls, Pistols et. al. They got in, got out and left with a heavy dollop of charisma tossed in. This DVD portrays such beauty, taking these guys from innocence to hell in just 24 rapid months. Watch the on-screen decline of Johnny Thunders as he goes from a fun-loving kid to a surly junkie, never losing his mastery of the axe but forgoing most of his apparently innate human decency by the end. Get worn out by the motor-mouth David Johansen, who just really needs to shut the fuck up. And watch Jerry Nolan prove that he is every bit as good as Keith Moon, holding together the entire game against some truly inspired yet un-together chops from the other guys. If you loved the Dolls and know why you did, this is for you. If you didn't dig them, then this will be a lesson as to why you are wrong and should know that the Dolls were as important as Eddie Cochran and Elvis. Special features, some interviews; all the DVD extras, which include more self-absorbed blather from Johansen, a good one-on-one with Gruen by Handsome Dick Manitoba. But the meat is the live stuff, and the menu allows for unfettered viewing of a dozen Dolls' gems, mostly from 1972-73, when the band held sway over an impressive field of royalty. [MVD]


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