Sunday, April 11, 2021

Hubert Vigilla on Revenge of the Mekons (2013) which hits Ovid.TV April 14

(This is a repost of one of the reviews that ran when the film World premiered at DOC NYC in 2013)

Steve's already mentioned how wonderful Revenge of the Mekons is, but it's worth restating since the world premiere screening is tonight. If you're a Mekons fan, go see it. If you just like docs on fascinating people, go see it. Joe Angio's film has a lovable, amoeba-shaped quality. It isn't quite as streamlined or as obvious as some music docs, but like the band, that's part of its charm. Revenge of the Mekons is always interesting to watch because the Mekons themselves are a fascinating group of people whose longevity is rooted in the fact that they've remain consistently interesting.

There are great interviews with various Mekons boosters throughout the documentary, such as writers Luc Sante and Greil Marcus, but I think novelist Jonathan Franzen has the best summation of the band's appeal which also applies to the film (I'm paraphrasing here): the band is great for people who feel they're at conflict with their own culture; they won't show you how to win the war, but they will show you how to be a more amusing and gracious loser..

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