Border Radio

Film
X MAN Doe scans the headlines.
X MAN Doe scans the headlines.

Time Out says

The ’80s L.A. punk scene seems an odd starting point for acclaimed chick-flick auteur Allison Anders (Gas Food Lodging)—and indeed, this halting 1987 effort (codirected by her UCLA classmates Kurt Voss and Dean Lent) proves to be a nostalgic diversion at best. A meandering punk noir about a missing rock star, Border Radio is long on looks but short on plot or compelling performances. For fans of the scene, the chance to watch SoCal musical luminaries such as John Doe (X), Chris D. (the Flesh Eaters) and Dave Alvin (the Blasters) in their aggressive prime is manna from cinematic heaven. Ultimately, however, it’s the freewheeling making-of documentary (shot in 2002) and dishy audio commentaries featuring Anders, Alvin and Doe and others that supply the real treasures and capture the spirit of La La Land’s creative underbelly in a way that the trio’s mannered film never quite does. — Dan Catalano

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