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Tromeo and Juliet Lloyd Kaufman, James Gunn, Will Keenan, Jane Jensen, Maximillian Shaun, Valentine Miele, Earl McKoy, Stephen Blackehart, Patrick Connor, Tamara Craig Thomas, Wendy Adams, Steve Gibbons, Debbie Rochon,

Tromeo & Juliet: A modern punk re-telling of the Bard’s classic story that sees two young lovers from feuding families risk everything for each other. Other than the ending, this is a reasonably true interpretation of Shakespeare‘s story – even large chunks of olde dialogue have been kept – but as this is Troma there’s (obviously) an exploitative twist in that it’s packed with blood, sexy goths, lesbians, gratui-tits, piercings, monsters, tampons, vomit, showtunes, popcorn, rats, and a bunch of masturbation / poop / piss / gay / incest jokes. Most annoyingly, there’s a ton of shameless and distracting Troma self-promotion like huge posters, VHS boxes, and Toxie even makes a brief appearance… as if this movie was destined to be the most successful Troma release! It’s very 1990s (the clothes, haircuts, music, the references, and technology like CD-ROMs) as well as being very low-budget effort even by Troma standards: the pairing of which provides a double kick of nostalgia and admirably guerrilla low-budget aesthetic. For a comedy however, it’s not particularly funny although the the end credits provide more laughs in 5 mins than the previous 90 – with dozens of fake entries, and someone proudly proclaiming “Now I don’t have to read the play!”. None of Troma’s releases are aimed at mass audiences and despite taking on one of the most famous stories of all time, Tromeo and Juliet is no exception – it’s low-fi, silly, violent, and controversial in true Troma/Kaufman-style. Despite all of this, ultimately, it isn’t as funny or shocking as it needs to be to sustain a movie this basic. I picked up the Blu-Ray, which I could only recommend for mega-fans of the film as there’s a bunch of extras and four different commentaries – all quite funny.

Score: 3.5/10

Tromeo Juliet Lloyd Babe jacqueline tavarez Kaufman, James Gunn, Will Keenan, Jane Jensen, Maximillian Shaun, Valentine Miele, Earl McKoy, Stephen Blackehart, Patrick Connor, Tamara Craig Thomas, Wendy Adams, Steve Gibbons Tromeo and Juliet Lemmy Times Square Lloyd Kaufman, James Gunn, Will Keenan, Jane Jensen, Jacqueline Tavarez, Maximillian Shaun, Valentine Miele, Earl McKoy, Stephen Blackehart, Patrick Connor, Tamara Craig Thomas, Wendy Adams, Ste Tromeo and Juliet Punks Lloyd Kaufman, James Gunn, Will Keenan, Jane Jensen, Maximillian Shaun, Valentine Miele, Earl McKoy, Stephen Blackehart, Patrick Connor, Tamara Craig Thomas, Wendy Adams, Steve Gibbons, Debbie Rochon, Tiffan

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Anvil! The Story of Anvil: follows two friends who have been gigging together since 1978, and their continual struggle to re-emerge on the global rock scene. Don’t be fooled – or put off – by the heavy meal angle; the documentary is focused on their heart-warming dedication to the band, and mostly behind the scenes. Front man ‘Lips’ is an absolute legend of a personality; such a nice guy (running around the festivals meeting his heroes) – and sounds uncannily like Paul Giamatti. You end up feeling a bit sorry for his bandmate Rob who gets a raw deal and winds up as a punch bag / door mat. What Anvil! does best is capture the trials and tribs of a DIY tour – and band life in general – very well; the festivals, crummy venues, playing live, disappointing crowds, pay squabbles, transport chaos, emotions, recording… it’s all there, and it’s all raw – down to the drunk guy drinking beer through his nose. The only minor point from me is that some shots and scenes feel played just for documentary; although only the initial setup, there’s clearly no script. I didn’t realise how engaged I was until the very end, where I wept a few tears of joy… like a totally non-rock ‘n’ roll pussy. The Story of Anvil is the most upbeat of tragedies: you see these guys grinding away at shitty day jobs only to fund their gigs and albums; and in that way, this is one of the most universally inspirational stories you’ll ever see. Must-see documentary.

Score: 9/10