It’s been a bit of a sad week here in Lipstick Lamarrland. Frankly, it’s been downright terrible. Mick, a True Tales of a Punk Rock Pinup star and all around top cat, was diagnosed with feline lymphoma shortly before Christmas. There wasn’t much the vet could do, so we elected to keep him as happy and comfortable as we could, for as long as we could. Mick the Cat has always been incredibly good at letting us know what he wanted (spoiler alert: It was mostly food. And belly rubs), and he let us know early this week that it was time for him to go. Mr. Lamarr, Dev the Cat, and I miss him very, very much.
But it hasn’t been all sadness and general crapness around here. On Monday, we had a great time at our local Alamo Drafthouse, which is probably the greatest place in America to see a movie. If you’ve never been to one, you are truly missing out. You select the location of your seat when you purchase tickets, and you can order food and beverage from a full service menu before and during the film. Best of all, Alamo enforces a strict no talking/no texting rule, which cuts down on the surly obnoxious teen population tenfold. Also, Alamo offers film series that you simply aren’t going to find anywhere else. Into watching cheesy gorefests from the Eighties, projected onto the big screen from the original VHS? Alamo has a series for that! Want to quote all the dialogue to your favorite film along with many other slightly drunk like minded people? Or maybe sing along to all the songs in your favorite musical? Alamo has a series for that, too!
And fried pickles. Alamo also has friend pickles.
So, why were we at Alamo? For the most wonderful reason of all: to see Rock and Roll High School.
Have you seen Rock and Roll High School? If you haven’t you absolutely should. Right now. Seriously. Go right now and watch Rock and Roll High School.
Do you remember all those girls in high school who were, like super into Grease? And how you didn’t really like Grease all that much, but they looked like they were having such a good time with it and you kind of wished you liked it, too? Well, this is the movie for you.
It’s about my first feminist hero, Riff Randell, played by PJ Soles of Halloween, Carrie, and Stripes fame. Riff and her proton splitting, nuclear physics majoring, enormous glasses-wearing best friend Kate Rambeau attend Vince Lombardi High (where “Winning isn’t everything – it’s the only thing”), which has just been taken over by the evil, fun hating Principal Togar. Pretty much all you need to know about these three is summed up here:
Riff is just FANTASTIC. Her clothes are completely off the hook. She rocks pigtails like literally no has has ever rocked pigtails or will ever rock pigtails again. And all she wants to do is find a way to meet her favorite band, the Ramones.
“What’s so feminist about a girl who just wants to meet the Ramones?” I can hear you asking. Ah ha! You see, Riff doesn’t just want to meet the Ramones – she wants to write songs for the Ramones!
That being said, I don’t exactly think she’d kick Joey out of bed, if the opportunity – ahem – arose for real, and not just because she’d been smoking the pot. Riff is a sex positive feminist.
So – will Riff make it to the big Ramones concert? Or will she be thwarted by the evil Miss Togar and her bumbling Hall Monitors? Does manic super groupie Angel Dust stand between Riff and songwriting stardom? How does a van named Warlock figure into all of this? Will Joey Ramone ever be allowed to eat pizza? And who, exactly, is Mr. Magloob?
Seriously – just go watch Rock and Roll High School. No matter what your trials and tribulations may be, I promise that you will feel much, much happier by the end of the movie.
This particular screening of Rock and Roll High School included a great Q&A with Marky Ramone, as part of his Punk Rock Blitzkrieg: My Life as a Ramone book tour – and an autographed copy of the book! I got my own autographed copy a couple of weeks ago at the Marky Ramone’s Blitzkrieg show, and I can’t recommend it enough – it is truly a great entry in the ever expanding field of Ramones Studies. It’s an incredibly honest portrait of the Ramones that is still very endearing. And its worth reading for the chapter about Phil Spector alone (spoiler alert: Phil is somewhat less endearing….)
So, what am I going to do with all these autographed copies? Well, I thought I’d give one to you! Just follow True Tales of a Punk Rock Pinup and leave a comment with your favorite Ramones lyric for a chance to win! You have until Friday, February 6th to enter – the winner will be announced on Saturday, February 7th.
Good luck, cretins!