The Other F Word

 

The Other F Word

Directed by Andrea Blaugrund Nevins

Produced by Cristan Reilly

Photographed & Edited by Geoffrey Franklin

World Premiere – March 2011 SXSW Film Festival, Austin

General Release Date: November 2011

 

Production Studio:

Theatrical: Rare Bird Films & Warrior Poets

Video: Oscilloscope Laboratories

 

Cast:

Jim Lindberg (Pennywise)

Tim McIlrath (Rise Against)

Fat Mike (NOFX)

Art Alexakis (Everclear)

Mark Mothersbaugh (Devo)

Mark Hoppus (Red Hot Chili Peppers)

Tony Adolescent (The Adolescents)

Lars Frederiksen (Rancid)

Tony Hawk

 

Video:

Resolution: 480i

Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1

Codec: MPEG-2

Disc Size: DVD-9

Feature length: 99:30

Chapters: 18

Region: All

 

Extras:
Audio Commentary by Filmmakers Andrea Nevins, Cristan Reilly and Punkdads Jim Lindberg and Art Alexakis

• Outtake Compilation: (4:20)

• Mark Mothersbaugh (Devo) (4:00)

• Dr. Drew (3:25)

• Art Alexakis “Father of Mine” (3:40)

• Tim McIlrath “Swing Life Away” (4:45)

• Jim Lindberg & Black Pacific: “Living with Ghosts” (3:25) & “The System” (2:45)

• Post-Screening Q&A at SXSW, March 2011 (14:50)

• Theatrical Trailer

• Oscilloscope Previews

 

Presentation:

Custom gatefold paper DVD case w/ slipcover

Release date: January 31, 2012



SYNOPSIS [Oscilloscope]

This revealing, funny, and touching film asks what happens when a generation's ultimate anti-authoritarians – punk rockers – become society's ultimate authorities – dads. With a large chorus of punk rock's leading men - Blink-182's Mark Hoppus, Red Hot Chili Peppers' Flea, Rise Against’s Tim McIlrath – The Other F Word follows Jim Lindberg, a 20-year veteran of the skate punk band Pennywise, on his hysterical and moving journey from belting his band's anthem ”F--k Authority” to embracing his ultimately authoritarian role in mid-life: Fatherhood. Other dads featured in the film include Art Alexakis (Everclear), Mark Mothersbaugh (Devo), Tony Adolescent (The Adolescents), Fat Mike (NOFX), Lars Frederiksen (Rancid), skater Tony Hawk, and many others.


     

 

Andrea Blaugrund:

“When I was a kid growing up in New York City, Punk Rockers were the people you crossed the street to avoid. So when Cristan Reilly, the film’s producer, came to me with a book that her old friend, Jim Lindberg the lead singer of the Southern California skate punk band Pennywise, had written about being a Punk Rock Dad, I was both repelled and intrigued. This is the same guy who belts out his band’s anthem, “Fuck Authority.” How attainable is that credo for a dad trying to raise three girls?

 

“It seemed like a real opportunity to see how the most extreme version of our teenage, idealistic, rebellious selves might be struggling when placed in the real world, with real-life demands. So Cristan and I met with Jim Lindberg, who seemed nice, not so scary (off stage), and started filming the day his newest album was released. One of the amazing things about punk is that while the artists might get older, new teenage fans keep finding them, which meant Jimmy was heading on tour at 43 to perform for 17 year olds.


     

 

“Turns out, Jim was the perfect gateway drug, and down the punk rock rabbit hole we went. We really set out to make a film following Jim through a year, as he tried to balance singing lyrics like “Fuck No! We won’t listen!” and raising daughters rapidly approaching adolescence. But we ended up following a much more complicated path, finding that every Punk Rock father we spoke to (and they kept getting more and more Punk, as each one said, “Well, if you think I’M punk, you should talk to....”) had a similar story: Fatherhood not only challenged their basic punk rock tenets, but more profoundly, opened their eyes more clearly to their own fathers.”


     

 

Cristan Reilly:

“Punk Rock Dad. It’s a great oxymoron. Andrea and I, who share, among many other things, an ironic sense of humor, started with that very tiny but amusing kernel. I already had known Punk Rocker Jim Lindberg when we were kids, so we first reached out to him to discuss his thoughts on family life and his recent book, Punk Rock Dad: No Rules, Just Real Life. We had no idea how much deeper the story would go, and we believe our film reflects the journey from funny concept to a series of moving realizations about rebellion, growing up, fathers, and fatherhood.

 

“Jim was about to go on tour with his new album, Reason to Believe, and was torn about leaving his three kids for a long stretch of time. Initially, Andrea and I thought this would be the tension of the film -- the pull of work (albeit an unorthodox kind) and home. It became clear pretty quickly to us that Jim was going through what he later described in the film as a mid-life crisis, and he began asking much bigger questions -- what did his life mean and how was he living up to his values?


     

 

“This was clearly the stuff of a movie, but Jim was very cautious about becoming a reality star and as the crisis became more and more clear, the less he wanted cameras in his face. Wholly wedded to this idea of the clash of the punk rock ethos with fatherhood, Andrea and I peeled down to a new layer -- was this crisis Jim was having also being felt by other punk rockers, all of whom were hitting that stage of life?  Each one of these guys had an amazing story to tell, not only about balancing the punk rock ethos of no responsibility and no rules with parenting, but about how having children made them see their own childhood with a startling and heart-wrenching clarity.

 

“In the end, after the journey we took with our punk rock dads, honesty is what everyone wanted to be expressed -- not just a funny, high concept, but indeed a moving examination of what it means to grow up and seize the opportunity to make right what felt terribly wrong to these men, what made them punks in the first place. As Jim says, “I want to be there for my kids. I want to be there when they want me to be there. I think that’s the punkest thing of all.”


     


Critical Response:

SF Chronicle:
Nothing screams "rebellion" like a punk rocker at his loudest, and nothing coos "fat and happy establishment" like a father. Put those two together - give a kid to a man with bondage tattoos - and you have one big daddy of a cultural incongruity.  That's the upshot of “The Other F Word,” Andrea Blaugrund Nevins' documentary about guys who've learned firsthand that nothing rocks your world like having a baby. For them, growing up punk, "fatherhood" was the dirty word - the representation of all that was wrong with their own families and the world at large. "How did we go from rebelling against our own parents to becoming parents ourselves?" asks Jim Lindberg, front man for Pennywise and father of three perfectly darling girls.  - Amy Biancolli


     


NY Times:

. . . what begins as an amusing fluff piece (“Daddy’s messed up,” mumbles one woozy subject after dropping his gurgling infant) slowly emerges as a compelling and often touching peek at punk paternity. Men who never expected to live long enough to start families now find themselves, like Jim Lindberg of Pennywise, torn between punishing tour schedules and the determination to attend a father-daughter dance. . . Driven by memories of broken homes and absent or abusive fathers, the film’s interviewees speak with a candor that, particularly in the case of Everclear’s Art Alexakis, can be devastating. And though wives and girlfriends are regrettably ignored, these dads have plenty to say about breadwinning in an age of free downloads and ever more youthful audiences. - Jeannette Catsoulis


     


Slant Magazine:

"Every generation thinks they invented sex." The same can likely be said for the kind of ersatz rebellion celebrated in The Other F Word, a lightweight, frustratingly lazy documentary about punk-rock dads. Covered in tattoos and clinging to wisps of their outsider status, the men profiled here seem assured of the novelty of their dilemma, as if they were the first generation to settle into a middle-class existence after a youth spent on the fringes. It's an illusion that the film coddles rather than challenges. . . Blissfully unaware of the world outside its own milieu, “The Other F Word” celebrates its road warriors as an entirely new breed of musician that has to balance family responsibilities with the financial obligations those families create, a narrow view that ignores generations of jazz and big-band artists who spent entire thankless careers working the road. This myopic focus not only makes The Other F Word feel detached from reality, but makes way for heaps of sentimentality and self-pity, the camera enchanted by the mystique of lonely hotel rooms and long-distance phone calls. - Jesse Cataldo


     


LensView: 6.5

Though Jesse Cataldo hits a critical nail on the head, I found the movie’s naivete refreshing.  Punk rockers have always struck me as out of touch with the rest of the world while all the while feeling they they alone know the truth about the truth - the real identity of the man behind the curtain.  I suppose that tells you more about me than it does about them - all the same, I found it easy to generalize from their experience of sudden parenthood to the surprise that fatherhood has for most men. I doubt such is the the filmmaker’s intention, but I found it t be so.


The first 20 minutes of the documentary covers the rise of punk rock as seen by its artists - their sense of alienation, their anarchistic, anything goes, fuck-you attitude, and the camaraderie amongst the bands, despite, and partially because of the dangers of living at such an edge.  Then comes Fatherhood and how the various musicians adapted and how they did or didn’t alter their life style to accommodate the new earthlings in their lives and the changing landscape of the music scene.


     


Video: 2~ 8/6

As is usual with documentaries that rely in part on sources not shot by the filmmakers, the visual clarity presented covers the gamut, though the noisiest bits come from nighttime footage shot by Geoffrey Franklin.  Color and contrast is true and, as usual, Oscilloscope doesn’t get in the way when transferring the video to disc.


Audio: 7

Whenever music is front and center on a DVD or Blu-ray I feel it is essential to present the audio in a lossless track. PCM would have been preferred to Dolby Digital in this case.  All the same, dialogue is clear, and yelling punkers scream their lungs out with enthusiastic passion.


Extras: 6

Aside from the entertaining and absorbing audio commentary by Filmmakers Nevins & Reilly and Punkdads Lindberg & Alexakis, the remaining bonus items consist of brief clips - we’re out before we know we’re in.  The fifteen minute Q&A at the film festival that premiered the film is interesting, with its self-selected audience more excited about the punkers than the movie it seemed.  Lots of trailers round out the features: In addition to the theatrical trailer we find five Oscilloscope Previews: Gunnin’ for the #1 Spot, Scott Walker: 30 Century Man, Beautiful Losers, Exit Through the Gift Shop, and Bellflower.


     


Recommendation: 7

The Other F Word functions as both a punk rock history lesson and how some of the men in those bands have adapted to becoming fathers.  The wives aren’t heard from so much, and many of the kids are too young to weigh in as I would have liked, but as whole, the movie is a fascinating adventure, whether you are a punkster or not.



Leonard Norwitz

© LensViews

January 22, 2012

 

 

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