CBGB (2013)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

SYNOPSIS: CBGB looks at New York's dynamic punk rock scene through the lens of the ground-breaking Lower East Side club started by eccentric Hilly Kristal in 1973 originally as a home for "country, bluegrass and blues" (thus the club's name) and which showcased cutting-edge bands through its closing in 2006. The Talking Heads, Patti Smith, The Ramones, Blondie, The Dead Boys, Bad Brains, Green Day, Soul Asylum, The Police, Bruce Springsteen, Everclear, George Thorogood, The Velvet Underground, … More

Rating: R (for language throughout, some sexual content, drug use,a nd a scene of violence)
Genre: Musical & Performing Arts, Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Jody Savin, Randall Miller
In Theaters:
On DVD: Dec 31, 2013
Xlrator Media - Official Site

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as Hilly Kristal

as Cheetah Crome

as Lisa Kristal

as Joey Ramone

as Debbie Harry

as Genya Ravan

as Iggy Pop

as Patti Smith

as Stiv Bators

as Merv Ferguson

as Nicky "F.cking" Gant

as Terry Ork

as Mad Mountain

as Dee Dee Ramone

as Richard Hell

as Legs McNeil

as Bertha Kristal

as John Holmstrom

as Mary Harron

as Lou Reed

as David Byrne

as Chris Frantz

as Andy Summers

as Stewart Copeland

as Johnny Blitz

as Jimmy Zero

as Johnny Ramone

as Tommy Ramone

as Tom Verlaine

as Richard Lloyd

as Billy Ficca

as Shamai Kristal

as Young Bertha

as Sarah Brown

as Benjamin Brown

as Palace Bartender

as Palace Hotel Manager

as Officer Stan

as Psychotic Fan

as Michael Sticca

as Wayne County

as Bank Teller

as Female Reporter

as Genya's Friend

as Angry Hombre #1

as Angry Hombre #2

as Ye Ol' Farmer
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Critic Reviews for CBGB

All Critics (37) | Top Critics (14)

The music rocks, but little else does, in Randall Miller's sitcom snapshot of New York's iconic punk incubator.

Full Review… | October 15, 2013
Top Critic

Alan Rickman's lead performance highlights a sincere but insubstantial rock pic.

Full Review… | October 11, 2013
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic

"CBGB" ain't no party, it ain't no disco, it ain't no foolin' around.

Full Review… | October 11, 2013
Top Critic

If you really want to remember those times? Get out "Horses." Or "Talking Heads: 77." Or "Blank Generation." Preferably on vinyl, with all the pops and scratches. And play them. Loud.

Full Review… | October 11, 2013
Newark Star-Ledger
Top Critic

I would swear on a stack of Dead Boys T-shirts and a first pressing of Richard Hell and the Voidoids' "Blank Generation" that it could not possibly have been like that: so silly, so trivial, so boring.

Full Review… | October 10, 2013
New York Times
Top Critic

In place of punk's howling rage, you get gross-out jokes that include at least a half-dozen close-ups of the poop from Kristal's bowel-challenged dog.

Full Review… | October 10, 2013
New York Post
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for CBGB

50,000 bands and 1 disgusting bathroom.

Very Good Film! The story, the texture, the music all lifted me into a different world. The cuts between this punk magazine and this story amazed me as they worked. The music is a dream collection and the quirky story of the accidental birth of this genre of music made me smile end to end. Overall I really enjoyed the movie personally... but I didn't have high expectations on what it was going to be either.

CBGB follows the story of Hilly Kristal's New York club from its conceit as a venue for Country, Bluegrass and Blues (CBGB) to what it ultimately became: the birthplace of underground rock 'n roll and punk. When Kristal had difficulty booking country bands in his club on the Bowery he opened his doors to other kinds of rock music. Kristal had one demand of the acts he booked; they could only play original music. No top 40's, no covers. It was the credo he lived by, support the artist at whatever the cost. Hilly Kristal ironically became known as the godfather of punk giving a chance to such bands as Blondie, Television, Ramones, Talking Heads, Dead Boys and The Police.

Manu Gino

Super Reviewer

four stars...

MisterYoda ?

Super Reviewer

The film was a disappointment. I thought from the trailer that the film would be good, but I was wrong. I didn't like the style of the film. The style tried to make it like a comic book/graphic novel style of transitions. I found that style distracting here. I would have rather watched a documentary about CBGB. Alan Rickman did a good job, given what he had to work with.

Sol C

Super Reviewer

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