Alex Hammond, Ian Markiewicz :: A crude celebration of the prolific garage rocker from Memphis, irate punk-rocker  and underground artist elevated to global phenomenon and filmed just months before his death. Without sentimentalism, friends and family members divulge his ambition, misery and greatest pieces." />

Better Than Something: Jay Reatard

United States / 90 min. / 2011 / English


A crude celebration of the prolific garage rocker from Memphis, irate punk-rocker  and underground artist elevated to global phenomenon and filmed just months before his death. Without sentimentalism, friends and family members divulge his ambition, misery and greatest pieces.

 

A crude celebration of the prolific garage rocker from Memphis, irate punk-rocker and underground artist elevated to global phenomenon and filmed just months before his death. But don’t expect mournful or edifying testimonies: the discourse by friends and families yields as little sentimentalism as the musician in question. The film opens with a tribute show, and from the first declarations, it becomes obvious we’re about to get dowsed in reality and honesty. “He knew how to understand my demons” affirms one fan, creating the three-dimensional image we were waiting for. You see, Jay Reatard, for all the stunts he pulled live, for all the blood flow he lost in each show, was no GG Allin. Better Than Something paints a picture of this normal guy, the vinyl freak, erratic but also ambitious (and stubborn), proud and private by nature. The fact he had his head screwed on is evident in his words: “I prefer doing many things regularly than being a virtuoso in just one” or “what I want is to be something bigger than a musician.” And this transcendence – that he achieved through tens of LPs, singles and bands – is the best evidence of his tireless dedication.

 

Details
Subtitles
VOSE

Premiere type
National Premiere


Showing format
HD

Participation
in festivals
Nashville Film Festival, NXNE, Melbourne International Film Festival, SANFIC, Raindance Film Festival

Leadings
Jimmy Lee Lindsey (Aka: Jay Reatard), Alicja Trout, Eric Freidl, Jeffrey Novak, King Louie

Screenwriter(s)
Ian Markiewicz

Editor(s)
Ian Markiewicz, Alex Hammond

Camera
Ian Markiewicz, Alex Hammond

Sound designer
Gigantic Post

Producer
Alex Hammond

Film company
Children of Productions

Film distributor
Hamm Productions

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