Friday, January 30, 2015

Quiet Riot: Well Now You're Here, There's No Way Back movie review

Quiet Riot: Well Now You're Here, There's No Way Back
Rating: ****

Picture source: Blabbermouth

In the early 1980s, Quiet Riot had hit it big time. In March 1983, their American debut album Metal Health was released. By November, the album had made its way up the Billboard charts at #1, becoming the first metal album to do so. Drummer Frankie Banali now tells the story of the LA hard rockers, as well as his own story in this new documentary. The movie- Well Now You’re Here, There’s No Way Back- is a heartfelt story about a rock band and the friendship at the center of it.   

While most of the movie documents the resurrection of Quiet Riot, we are also told of the band’s history. The first half hour of the movie is devoted to giving history of Quiet Riot from the beginning till the 1980s. At certain parts in the movie, it will cut back to the 1980s. For the most part, the information given in the history segments is good. Even being a Quiet Riot fan, some of the information was new to me as were some of the archival videos used. While this isn't a complete history of Quiet Riot, it’s still amazing how much director Regina Russell was able to fit in the movie’s runtime of 104 minutes.  

For interviewees, we get to hear from a nice group of people. This includes former members such as Rudy Sarzo as well as other figures in the world of hard rock including Dee Snider, Glenn Hughes and That Metal Show host Eddie Trunk. We also get to hear from Rhoads’ brother and sister, as well as singer Kevin DuBrow’s mother and even his brother Dr. Terry DuBrow (a plastic surgeon who has starred in several E! Network reality shows). Quiet Riot members Chuck Wright and Alex Grossi even get some camera time, sharing memories of DuBrow and discussing the status of the new band.  Watching the resurrection of Quiet Riot is quite entertaining. We get to see the band audition different singers in one scene before finally deciding on singer Mark Huff. The movie documents almost each and every show the band plays with Huff, which lead to some hilarious and even emotionally intense scenes.

Overall, Well Now You’re Here is a great documentary. The movie is also strengthened by the hard rocking tunes Quiet Riot delivered over the years. In the last few years, there have been a series of great rock documentaries: Anvil with Anvil: The Story of Anvil, Rodriguez with Searching for Sugar Man and Death with A Band Called Death just to name a few. Quiet Riot can now join that group with this movie. I highly recommend seeing this movie, whether you’re a fan of Quiet Riot or not.

This movie was also partially funded by Quiet Riot fans through Kickstarter in 2010. I was one of the many who donated some money so I could see this movie. After seeing this, I’m proud to say I had a small part in helping this movie become a reality.

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