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UK, 2003 (MIFF 2003, Mooks Backbeat)

Director: John Dower

Pompous pop stars, arrogant artists, cynical critics and ... the Gallagher brothers, all have their say in this wonderfully hyperactive and deliciously funny account of the short-lived and over-hyped phenomenon that was Britpop. Every significant personality is goaded into comment amidst images of fashions and hairstyles (already bizarrely outmoded and kitsch) and a soundtrack loaded with Blur, Oasis, Massive Attack, Pulp, Radiohead, The Stone Roses, The Verve, Suede and many more.

Landmark concerts and releases, chart wars, drink and drug intake, all are dissected to create a fascinating and astutely observed history of the music. Forget dry history though: Damon Albarn interviewed while strumming a ukulele, cow-slicing artist Damien Hirst passing comment sockless and lying in bed, the Gallagher brothers in matching Edwardian mansions, Jarvis Cocker, in his well-tidy bedsit, musing on the cocaine blizzard that killed creativity. An entertaining and illuminating survey of a seminal movement that charts the rise of Britpop from the decline of Thatcher to Tony Blair's New Labor, ending with the ubiquitous Robbie Williams.

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