DVD Review: The Runaways

By Drum Digital
01 December 2010

Rating 3/5

True-life drama. 2010. 102 min.

With Kristen Stewart, Dakota Fanning and Michael Shannon. Director: Floria Sigismondi. 16LSD.

“I love rock ‘n’ roll!” went Joan Jett’s 1981 smash hit, and nothing sums up this rock chick’s passion for loud electric guitars better.

But her story actually began six years earlier when, as a glam rock-obsessed teen learning to play guitar, she met up with eccentric record producer Kim Fowley (Shannon). He saw the potential of a teenage all-girl band and helped Joan (Stewart) put together The Runaways, recruiting 15-year-old blonde bombshell Cherie Currie (Fanning) as the “jailbait” frontgirl.

This warts-and-all story of the band’s brief career is one of the best films yet about why rock ’n roll is such a seductive drug for horny, rebellious teens. The sex angle backfired on them and drugs destroyed Currie’s career, but The Runaways held their own inamale-dominated industry and their raw, urgent music is as powerful as ever. The direction falters at times, but the cast is excellent. Bonus: commentary, featurettes.

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