Spinal Tap meets Spice World The Movie via Evil Dead and Repossessed. What’s not to like?
This was never going to be a work of highbrow cinematic genius, but for something that could easily have been genuinely terrible, Studio 666 is actually a pretty great night out. The script takes a little time to find its feet and acting abilities vary, but the concept is fun and the execution ridiculous in the required way. There’s an air of Wayne’s World at times (not least in one celebrity guest appearance that’s as unexpected as it is a highlight) and both the humour and horror is ‘adult’ in a juvenile kind of way. At times the ‘fuck you dude, here’s my middle finger’ dialogue can feel forced, but on the whole sets the right tone for what is in effect a very teenage movie starring middle aged men.
There’s a gag in the film where a fan tells Dave that the Foo Fighters are his second favourite band, ‘after Coldplay’. Along with shooting friendly fire at the other group there’s a tacit understanding, both in the joke and the movie itself, that the Foo Fighters are perhaps not seen as the edgiest of bands. It’s exactly this self awareness that makes watching The Nicest Man In Rock™ go cartoon cannibal-demonic so satisfying. Is there such a thing as an anti-vanity project?
I don’t think being a fan of the band or their music is in any way a requirement for enjoying this movie, but a lot of it does hang on Dave Grohl’s pleasingly hammy performance. He may not be the next Laurence Olivier, but it turns out he is a remarkably decent comedy actor. Though kudos also had to be given to Rami for his hilarious faux-hippy playboy persona which does some serious scene stealing along the way. And if you don’t want to give Pat Smear a hug, and a comfy bed, by the end of it I will be amazed.
My expectations going into this were low but I laughed lots and found its occasional clunkiness and terrible special effects endearing.
Pearl Jam high-five everyone!
All words by Susan Sloan.