Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Heavy Metal Parking Lot (1986)

Heavy Metal Parking Lot (1986)

Recently at Anthology Film Archives here in NYC, the two guys that made Heavy Metal Parking Lot showed up and brought many different films to show over a couple days.  I had always heard of Heavy Metal Parking Lot, for so many years.  I was a huge music fan, though not much of a metal fan at all, but this is one of those films that everyone had seen, and thought I should too. 

For those of you who do not know, in 1986 Judas Priest was playing at an arena in Maryland and these two guys had just gotten some video equipment at their jobs and decided to test it out by going out to the parking lot and interview some of the metalheads.  What happened next was a 30 year ongoing project that has become part of the culture of the heavy metal scene, and popular culture in general. 

Basically what you see is a ton of very drunk, fucked up, high and ready to rock teens and young adults hanging out and mugging for the camera.  This is when everyone didn't have a cell phone camera, and many people may have thought this was for MTV or some other outlet, so they really put on a show. 

The whole thing is hysterically funny but at the same time, it is very clear why I was not a metal fan, as these were the type of people I would avoid like the plague when I was younger.  They do not come off as highly intelligent, or motivated, and this is obviously the seed from which Wayne's World was born.  I was reminded of The Decline Of Western Civilization, where the first part was angry young punks, unhappy with the world they lived in, and unable to do much about it, so they got drunk and pissed off.  I can relate to that mentality, but when the second part came along, the one called The Metal Years, the fans of metal were nowhere near as intelligent or thoughtful, especially when drunk or high.  The difference between the two crowds is vast. 

All in all the whole presentation was enjoyable, as other than just the 17 minute original movie, they showed where are they now clips, and other things, like Neil Diamond Parking Lot, which they filmed in the same arena. 

8 out of 10 stars. 

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