For the first time Doc’n Roll Festival arrives at Hackney Picturehouse 25-28 September. The event plays host to a huge number of documentaries and a rare retrospective of one of the greatest music documentary filmmakers, Julien Temple. There will be more than a dozen films screened over four days and the line-up includes premieres, Q&As and special live events.
Audiences are offered the chance to see four outstanding films from Julien Temple, such as Joe Strummer: The Future is Unwritten and LONDON The Modern Babylon. Temple will also be in attendance, answering questions following a screening of Oil City Confidential. Released in 2009, Oil City Confidential follows Dr. Feelgood, a four-piece band who emerged from Cavney Island in the 1970s to conquer Europe and top the UK charts. The piece is enhanced by contributions from members of The Clash, Blondie and The Sex Pistols plus collaborators Jools Holland and Alison Moyet. A taster of his upcoming documentary about Wilko Johnson is to be previewed in addition the other films.
Temple has used his insider knowledge of the music industry to produce a number of insightful documentaries. For Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten (2007) Temple drew on his close friendship and shared music history with the punk legend, to celebrate the life and legacy of Strummer, before, during and after The Clash. His 2012 release, LONDON The Modern Babylon, pulls together a century of music and film footage to narrate the story of London’s journey through 100 years of cultural change and reinvention. The film includes the familiar faces of David Bowie, Ray Davies, Bishi, Mick Jagger, Malcolm McLaren as well as the ordinary people of London. Using music as a central part of the work, the soundtrack spans years of London’s music scene, with iconic tracks from the Sex Pistols, The Clash, Small Faces, Lily Allen, Pink Floyd, Roxy Music, The Kinks, Madness, Bob Marley and many more.
Aside from Temple’s captivating documentaries, the Doc’n Roll line-up presents the London Premiere of A Band Called Death (2012). The American film, directed by Mark Christopher Covino and Jeff Howlet, explores the lives of the three teenage brothers who dared to be different during the 1970s Motown and Disco era and instead produced the first black punk band. Three decades after the band’s formation, Death’s music was rediscovered by a new audience and the brothers finally received the recognition they deserved. Another film on the programme is Danny Garcia’s Looking for Johnny (2014). The documentary examines the life of the late New York Dolls and Heartbreakers guitarist Johnny Thunders. Garcia talked to the 50 people who were closest to the rocker about his music, which inspired punk and glam-metal and his hard lifestyle which lead to his untimely demise at 38.