Kill Your Idols

Kill Your Idols Image
Metascore
52

Mixed or average reviews - based on 10 Critics What's this?

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8.1

Universal acclaim- based on 10 Ratings

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  • Summary: This documentary is a thrilling, comprehensive guide to New York's buzzing downtown underground post-punk scene. (Palm Pictures)

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. 75
    Taking its title from a key track by the NYC noise band Sonic Youth, S.A. Crary's documentary about No Wave music and its paradoxical influence is both a history of music that sought to defy history and a sharp look at the crisis of innovation in an age of commodified nostalgia.
  2. 67
    One of the film's oddest aspects is the way the 2002 footage appears more dated than the scenes from 1978.
  3. Most interesting are the founding mothers and fathers of this movement, who first appear amusingly nostalgic and eventually grow exceptionally bitter as they complain about the packaged and ambitious nature of artists today.
  4. 50
    As Lydia Lunch of Teenage Jesus & the Jerks puts it, "They seem so desperate to be liked, desperate to have their music used in the next car commercial."
  5. 50
    Crary struggles to explain the eruption and influence of the extreme rock underground that began with the late-70s "no wave" scene and eventually generated acts like Swans and Sonic Youth.
  6. 50
    Kill Your Idols pulls a few punches, tempering its respect for No Wave values like extremity and contentiousness with a more 2006 concern for not actually offending anyone in particular.
  7. Despite his access to both No Wave luminaries and atmospherically battered footage of various bands wreaking havoc at various venues, Mr. Crary never figures out what story he wants to tell.

See all 10 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of
  2. Mixed: 0 out of
  3. Negative: 0 out of

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