Synopsis by Mark Deming
In 1981, Canadian heavy metal band Anvil released their first album, Hard 'n' Heavy, which earned them a potent reputation among discerning headbangers and established them as one of the pioneering acts of the speed metal movement. Anvil had a loyal following in their native Canada and they shared stages with some of the biggest names in heavy rock, but the lucky break that would have elevated them to real stardom never came, and legal troubles helped to derail the group's career in the mid-'80s. Years later, the likes of Metallica and Slayer would cite Anvil as a key influence, but lead vocalist Steve "Lips" Kudlow and drummer Robb Reiner struggled to keep the band alive, recording new material for tiny independent labels and trying to organize club tours as they juggled day jobs, families, and adult responsibilities. Documentary filmmaker Sacha Gervasi follows Kudlow and Reiner as they struggle to keep their ambitions alive despite 35 years of missing the brass ring in Anvil! The True Story of Anvil, which paints a sympathetic but warts-and-all portrait of the unexpected consequences of the rock & roll dream. Anvil! received its American premiere at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival.
heavy-metal-music, recording, rock-music, struggle