I couldn't really care less about either band, but I did find the exploration of explicit image manipulation interesting. In a way, it was like watching two very different kinds of car crashes. The BJM is consumed by drugs and erratic behavior (which is not particularly interesting - I find no romance in junkies). The DW, via the seemingly unfiltered voice over by the lead singer, come across as soulless creeps.
For this to work you must accept the premise that Anton's a genius, that the BJM make something more than tepid, hacky psychedelia homages. The truth is, Anton's a mediocre asshole. Accepting that, though, DIG! has a potent thesis, claiming (through deceptive editing, it's been noted) that well-groomed mediocrity (the Dandys) always succeeds over messy genius (BJM). But, again, that requires suspended disbelief.
One of the best music documentaries I've watched so far. It's super complete, full of lost, epic footage (thank God for the guys holding a camera) and cool interviews with, not only friends, but important people in the music industry. 26 years and never a fuck to spare to sign with a label, can't get more trve than that. Really made me want to see them, now that Anton's all sobered up and giving 3 hour long shows.
My own experience with BJM involved walking out of a show after listening to Anton Newcombe rant for most of it about how ridiculous the popularity of The Strokes was, especially when he was so talented. The one guitarist almost walked out, too. Perhaps this movie focuses on the reality TV aspect of their career, but that's what Anton seemed to put first. And I'll never understand why anyone considers him a genius.
BJM is so rad, and are a totally crazy band. This is a good watch if you're interested in what it takes to be in a band, and if you've ever wondered how it was for bands trying to "make" it. However, I feels like the Dandy Warhols and BJM were pushed through a "movie" shaped hole, not something completely free formed. Crazy shit happens when everyone's high.
I first watched this in my first apartment in SF, only to find out a few weeks later that BJM Joel lived underneath me. Anton is a destructive person and really you feel sorry for his band & what they could have been. It is a story we rarely get this much insight into, a guy who sabotages himself and band when he is given opportunity or a uncertainty. The Dandy's had survival in mind. Anton just had himself & fear.
I hate all this tortured genius nonsense. When you're more famous for your lifestyle and issues than your music you're not a genius you're a screw up! I enjoyed the contrast between Taylor & Newcombe's attitude to the music industry, but this was no Oasis V Blur rivalry as Newcombe's issues would have always got in the way of any potential fame.
It's an interesting documentary for all the wrong reasons....neither of the bands is as great as the filmmaker wants them to look like. As a study in self destruction it would have worked great without the footage with The Dandy Warholes, because it really looks forced when you show Newcombe going through hell and then go "hey look how much fun they're having". And the biggest mistake is not showing his wife.....