Detroit Rock City (film)

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Detroit Rock City
Detroit rock city ver1.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byAdam Rifkin
Produced byBarry Levine
Gene Simmons
Written byCarl V. Dupré
StarringEdward Furlong
Sam Huntington
Giuseppe Andrews
James DeBello
Lin Shaye
Melanie Lynskey
Natasha Lyonne
and featuring Kiss as themselves
Music byJ. Peter Robinson
Kiss
Thin Lizzy
The Runaways
Van Halen
Black Sabbath
Blue Öyster Cult
Pantera
Cheap Trick
AC/DC
CinematographyJohn R. Leonetti
Editing byMark Goldblatt
Peter Schink
Distributed byNew Line Cinema
Release datesAugust 13, 1999
Running time95 min.
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$15,000,000
Box office$24,217,115[1]
 
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Detroit Rock City
Detroit rock city ver1.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byAdam Rifkin
Produced byBarry Levine
Gene Simmons
Written byCarl V. Dupré
StarringEdward Furlong
Sam Huntington
Giuseppe Andrews
James DeBello
Lin Shaye
Melanie Lynskey
Natasha Lyonne
and featuring Kiss as themselves
Music byJ. Peter Robinson
Kiss
Thin Lizzy
The Runaways
Van Halen
Black Sabbath
Blue Öyster Cult
Pantera
Cheap Trick
AC/DC
CinematographyJohn R. Leonetti
Editing byMark Goldblatt
Peter Schink
Distributed byNew Line Cinema
Release datesAugust 13, 1999
Running time95 min.
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$15,000,000
Box office$24,217,115[1]

Detroit Rock City is a 1999 American comedy film about four teenagers in a Kiss cover band who try to see their idols in Detroit in 1978. Comparable to Rock 'n' Roll High School, Dazed and Confused, The Stöned Age, and I Wanna Hold Your Hand, Detroit Rock City tells a coming of age story through a filter of 1970s music and culture in the United States. The movie ultimately took its title from the Kiss song of the same name. It flopped at the box office, grossing fewer than five million dollars domestically, while the final gross of $24,217,115 barely passed the budget.

The film was shot at Cedarbrae Collegiate Institute in Scarborough, Ontario, Canada, and other Ontario locations.[2] Other Ontario locations include Copps Coliseum, Hamilton, Ontario.

Storyline[edit]

It's 1978 in Cleveland, Ohio. Hawk (Edward Furlong), Lex (Giuseppe Andrews), Trip (James DeBello), and Jam (Sam Huntington) are four rebellious teenage boys who love rock and roll and idolize KISS. The boys are elated to have tickets to see KISS in Detroit the following night. Having discovered a secret cache of KISS albums, Jam's ultra-conservative and religiously hysterical mother, Mrs. Bruce (Lin Shaye), races up to the house where the boys are hanging out and drags Jam home. Jam's mother discovers the tickets the next day and destroys them in front of Jam and the others. She then pulls Jam from his school and has him transferred to a Catholic boarding school.

While in class, the three remaining boys hear a radio contest for tickets to the show. Trip leaves class to call the contest line and ends up winning the tickets. The boys then ditch school to bust Jam out. At the Catholic school, Hawk disguises himself as a pizza delivery guy and delivers a pizza spiked with hallucinogenic psilocybin mushrooms to Father McNulty. The priest gets high, allowing the group to whisk Jam away. The group reunited, they set off for Detroit in Lex's mother's car, which he borrowed.

On the freeway, Trip throws a slice of pizza out of the window, where it hits the windshield of a tailgating Trans Am, driven by two Italian-American Disco fanatics, Kenny and Bobby, along with their girlfriends Christine (Natasha Lyonne) and Barbara (Emmanuelle Chriqui). The enraged Kenny forces the station wagon off the road and proceeds to pull Hawk out of the car and rub his face on the cheese-covered windshield. The bullying upsets Christine who leaves, walking down the freeway. Hawk then knees Kenny in the groin and knocks him out, leaving Bobby to contend with all four boys who suddenly pull out weapons (A metal KISS belt buckle, a wallet chain, and Jam's drumsticks). They leave the disco fans tied to the guardrail with KISS makeup on and drive the Trans Am into a ditch. They come upon Christine walking down the freeway and offer a ride to the city.

Upon arrival, the group discovers that Trip did not stay on the phone long enough to give the radio station his information, forcing the station to give the tickets to the next caller. Back outside, Lex notices that the car has been stolen. They suspect Christine, who they left sleeping in the car. Hawk then suggests that the boys go their separate ways in order to find KISS tickets, and agree to meet in the same place in an hour and a half.

Hawk finds a scalper who suggests that he enter a strip contest to raise money for tickets. He becomes intoxicated and doesn't win, but is offered payment for his company by an older woman (Shannon Tweed). They go to her car and she takes his virginity. Afterwards, Hawk declines the money she offers him, but she insists. When Hawk locates the scalper again he runs off, indicating he's all sold out, much to Hawk's dismay.

Trip goes to a local convenience store in the hopes of mugging a younger child to get tickets. He grabs a kid in Ace Frehley makeup, but the kid has an older brother, Chongo; a hulking jock who, with his gang of thugs, threaten to beat him up unless Trip pays them $200.00. Trip plans to rob the convenience store with a fake gun (in reality a Stretch Armstrong doll), but ends up thwarting a real robbery attempt at the store, earning him a $150.00 reward and a passionate kiss from the cashier (Kristin Booth). Trip meets the thugs in an alleyway behind the store. The kid takes Trip's wallet and has Chongo punch Trip in the stomach.

Lex sneaks backstage with the KISS loading crew, but is soon discovered, causing him to flee from arena security. He is eventually caught and tossed over a fence. He is then menaced by a group of vicious dogs, but earns their trust when he plays frisbee with them. In a nearby building he discovers a chained-up Christine and his mother's car in a chop shop with two car thieves. Lex then uses his newly befriended dogs to chase the two thugs into a back office room, saving Christine and his mom's car. Lex and Christine share a passionate kiss.

Jam encounters his mother leading an anti-KISS rally. Mrs. Bruce grabs him and drags him to a church across the street for confession, taking away his drumsticks. He is seen by Beth (Melanie Lynskey), a girl from his school who is in the process of moving to Ann Arbor, Michigan with her parents. She rushes into the church and into the confessional booth. There she reveals to Jam that she's been in love with him since freshman year, but never had the courage to tell him. Jam admits that his feelings for her have been mutual. He and Beth then make love, losing their virginity to one another. They leave the church and go back to the diner across the street to meet with Beth's parents, and say goodbye. Jam, now imbued with new confidence, goes back to the rally. He finally stands up for himself, berating his mother for her domineering ways, her lack of understanding and her hypocrisy at telling other people how to live their lives when she can't even relate to her own son. Jam then demands his drumsticks back and Mrs. Bruce acquiesces, though she's broken one of them.

When the boys meet up again, at Jam's suggestion, they beat each other up in order to say that muggers took their tickets. Upon arrival at the concert, the guards are skeptical despite the boys nursing bloody wounds, but suddenly Trip points out the kid, his brother Chongo and his thugs from the convenience store, who are just entering the concert hall. The guards finds Trip's wallet (with his KISS Army picture ID and the $150.00 he got as reward for thwarting the robbery) on the kid's person, which Trip uses as "proof" of the "mugging". Enough for the guards, the tickets are taken from the kid and handed to Trip and security escorts the kid and his goons off the premises.

Astonished and elated, the boys enter the concert hall and KISS plays the title song of the movie, "Detroit Rock City". Jam catches a drum stick thrown by drummer Peter Criss as the film ends.[3]

Cast[edit]

DVD[edit]

The DVD is on Region 1, Region 2 and Region 4, although the special features differ.

Region 1 special features[edit]

Region 2 special features[edit]

Region 4 special features[edit]

KISSology Volume Three[edit]

In December 2007, the film was re-released on DVD as an exclusive bonus fifth disc contained within Kissology Volume Three: 1992–2000. This disc was only available with initial pre-orders sold during VH1 Classic's 24 Hours of KISSmas weekend marathon.

Soundtrack[edit]

Detroit Rock City Soundtrack
Soundtrack album by Various Artists
ReleasedAugust 3, 1999
GenreHard rock, heavy metal
Length55:48
LabelMercury

Track listing[edit]

  1. "The Boys Are Back in Town" performed by Everclear
  2. "Shout It Out Loud" performed by KISS
  3. "Runnin' with the Devil" performed by Van Halen
  4. "Cat Scratch Fever" performed by Pantera
  5. "Iron Man" performed by Black Sabbath
  6. "Highway To Hell" performed by Marilyn Manson
  7. "20th Century Boy" performed by Drain STH
  8. "Detroit Rock City" performed by KISS
  9. "Jailbreak" performed by Thin Lizzy
  10. "Surrender (Live)" performed by Cheap Trick
  11. "Rebel Rebel" performed by David Bowie
  12. "Strutter" performed by The Donnas
  13. "School Days" performed by The Runaways
  14. "Little Willy" performed by Sweet
  15. "Nothing Can Keep Me From You" performed by KISS

Note that the soundtrack does not feature all of the songs in the film. For instance, there are tracks from UFO (band) in the film that did not make the soundtrack.

See also[edit]

Footnotes and references[edit]

  1. ^ "Detroit Rock City (1999) - Box office / business". The Internet Movie Database (IMDb). Retrieved 14 November 2009. 
  2. ^ "Detroit Rock City (1999) - Filming locations". The Internet Movie Database (IMDb). 
  3. ^ Stephenson, Cliff (30 November 1999). "Detroit Rock City Review". DVDfile.com. Retrieved 14 November 2009. 

External links[edit]