What We Do is Secret (R) - 2008 - Runtime: 92 minutes
This movie has been on my DVR since May. Maggie recorded it knowing I've been wanting to see this (she's the best and is always looking out for me). As you can tell, I've stolen The Germs logo for my own selfish purposes. I love the Germs, they happen to be one of my favorite punk bands that didn't (and in my opinion, still don't) get the credit they deserve for pushing punk to the edge back in the late 70s. Their music was obviously influential but they it also had such a diabolical and destructive tone to the music and lyrics. Darby Crash may not have been a genius, but he certainly had his moments.
So this brings us to the movie about the beginnings of Jan Paul Beahm's infamous and epic desire to bring about a revolution to music. It's too bad that the movie is plain and mediocre, because there's a good story to tell here. It's just told in a convoluted mess of exposition and bad acting. There's never any real sense of urgency or placement of the story. It's just tells the story without any background, history or context of the times and the motivations behind these rebellious kids. Whereas punk music has had some great documentaries, the story of The Germs could have benefited from a more sterile look that a documentary would have given it. Instead, we're force fed a narrative that doesn't really delve too deeply into the story of Beahm and his ambitious plans for a band. The only redeeming thing in the movie was the talking heads provided by the actors portraying their real life counterparts being interviewed supposedly in the present day. It's a good perspective for the movie, which is why I think it would have been better to actually shoot a documentary, but I digress.
I mentioned bad acting, and while the main actors really do a good job (hell, Shane West was so good that he's picked up Crash's mantle and is now the lead singer of the reunited Germs), it's the supporting cast and everyone else that just lowers the bar to mediocre. I mean, there are just some forced lines with no emotion behind them that made me feel embarrassed. It was like I was watching a bad high school play.
So....in lieu of this bad movie, if you have an itch for a good punk movie, watch SLC Punk or watch any good documentaries like American Hardcore or End of the Century.
Rating: Avoid Like the Plague