I confess that Ian Dury and the Blockheads were one of those early punk bands I never quite understood the appeal of. (But, then, as someone who grew up on the hardcore of Black Flag and the Dead Kennedys, the Ramones always seemed a bit slowpoke to my ears as well.) So perhaps Mat Whitecross, director of the Dury biopic “sex & drugs & rock & roll,” was driven by that not-unfounded fear that a rocker lacking the name recognition of Johnny or Sid or Ian Curtis would be a hard sell even to punk aficionados. (Sure, Madness for one owes its carnival sound and style to Dury, but he's still relatively unknown at least on these shores.) How else to explain a film so MTV-slick it's practically anti-punk rock? Not only does “sex & drugs & rock & roll” not have any bollocks, it's like the nerd of the class desperately trying to get the cool kids to like him.
To read the rest visit The House Next Door at Slant Magazine.