Clip It: Each day, Jon Davis looks at the world of trailers, featurettes, and clips and puts it all in perspective.
There's been a couple great documentaries about musicians from our North American continent not finding success here in America or Canada but generating a huge following in other places. Searching for Sugar Man and Anvil! The Story of Anvil are my two favorites. It's an interesting phenomenon. Think of the band Cheap Trick, who did okay in the U.S but were huge in Japan. In fact, “But they're huge in Japan..” has become a rock cliche. But what about a Japanese band that's so good, it's not unreasonable to wonder why they aren't huge everywhere else?
That's the subject of We Are X. It appears the main visionary behind the band is the drummer Yoshiki, who is willing to push himself to the brink for his music. There was another important member who killed himself, and I'm sure that's a big part of the story. But we'll have to see the documentary to find out.
I am super excited to see it. It actually doesn't matter that it's about heavy metal. That's window dressing. It's really a transcendent story about the struggle to create art and how much is too much. A few years ago, I would have been really into Yoshiki's passion and his willingness to play until he drops. Then a little voice popped into my head. A little voice that I would have made fun of mercilessly and part of me hates me for admitting this, but it said: “Huh. Something tells me Yoshiki doesn't have kids.” Because if you are playing drums until you shut down from dehydration and you have a kid at home, aren't you being a little selfish? Or maybe he does have kids. And that brings up a host of other issues. Can creating art be selfish? Is it more authentic if it's a painful process?
And here's an even bigger question that was gnawing at me during the whole trailer: Since when did Stan Lee become a go-to expert on Japanese heavy metal?
Let me know what you think.