Movie Review: No Room For Rockstars

Seventeen years, thousands of miles, hundreds of bands, countless fans: I bet you don't have any idea what it takes to put on a show of this magnitude and drag it across the entire country for everyone to enjoy. This documentary, shot on the 2010 Vans Warped Tour, will be happy to lift the curtain and let you see.

Don't be surprised, however, if you get an eyeful of something that doesn't mesh with your longstanding vision of life on the tour bus. The bands are two or three to a vehicle, sharing all the facilities, showering sporadically, sleeping even less. They sit at booths and hawk their own merch while the acts who have achieved more noteriety leave for long spells for photo shoots and Rolling Stone interviews. We watch the seasoned roadies load on and off like the beasts they are, making sure things get where they need to go in order to move on schedule to the next town on the bill.

Watching this traveling musical circus move across the country is mind blowing. Teeming with punk rock, fringe, and some mainstream acts, we are on the inside as this family of lovable misfits talk about their tattoos, their hardships, and life on the road. From unknown kids playing the parking lots to gain exposure and sell a few CDs to big name acts like Pennywise, the camera follows everyone's ups and downs while looking for food, shelter, their own difficult-to-find tents, and the ever elusive but much needed sunblock.

Knowing what I do about the Vans Warped tour, I was suprised to find the very mainstream Mike Posner (who broke HUGE during the filming of this documentary) and the lamentably out-of-place Never Shout Never, led by the Bieberesque Christofer Drew, on the roster. While they may not have been the norm for a show that prides itself on cutting edge music, unrestrained headbanging, and mosh pit violence, they did bring large crowds and a devoted following to nearly every performance.

Overall, No Room For Rockstars is a great look at the people and places that make this tour what it is with hard work, sweat, and lots of fantastic music.

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