Anvil! The Story Of Anvil (D: Sacha Gervasi, U.S.). 85 minutes. Thursday (April 17), 7 pm, Winter Garden; Friday (April 18), 4:15 pm, Isabel Bader. Rating: NNNN
The marvellously redundant title of this year's opening-night gala seems to acknowledge that it's no longer possible to add anything to the rockumentary genre. After Spinal Tap and Some Kind Of Monster and all those episodes of Behind The Music, there's nothing we haven't already seen. And, yes, director Sacha Gervasi 's affectionate look at Lips Kudlow and Robb Reiner, aging Toronto rockers still trying to make the world take notice of their metal skills after two decades in obscurity, references that other Reiner's movie fairly directly, with amplifiers that really do go up to 11, arguments over marquee billing and more.
But it's all real, which undercuts the comedy and brings the tragic elements of the guys' dreams of hard-rocking stardom into harsh relief. Also, they eat at Pancer's, which makes them totally awesome.