Cinema: LA. Dolce Vita

THE DECLINE OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION

Directed by Penelope Spheeris

Consider Darby Crash, lead singer of the Germs. When the band was formed, their manager recalls, "they didn't know how to play their instruments." Darby still hasn't learned to sing into the mike during performances. Instead, he lurches across and off the stage topless, his baby fat segueing to paunch, his voice clogged with booze and speed, his bruised, burned and scarred body looking like a souvenir from a guerrilla war in which he was the only participant. He passes time offstage with his pet...

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