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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