Hit So Hard (2012)
As grunge took off, the music industry was completely transformed in a way nobody expected... especially the young musicians who went from tiny shared Seattle apartments to international superstardom, sometimes overnight. Some handled it well... and some did not. As the acclaimed drummer of Courtney Love's seminal rock band Hole, Patty Schemel was right in the middle of all of it. The openly gay woman who always felt "different" never dreamed she would be part of a multi-platinum selling band, touring with legends, or on the cover of Rolling Stone. Or that, thanks to drug addiction, she could lose it all. Hit So Hard tells the story of Patty's rise to fame (and nearly fatal fall from it), with no punches pulled... and it's one hell of a story. -- (C) Variance … More
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Critic Reviews for Hit So Hard
The torturous tale of a remarkable survivor of the grunge era - the troubled but talented drummer for Courtney Love's band, Hole.
Choppy camerawork, sloppy editing, and lack of a coherent narrative structure make for a frustrating viewing experience.
Ebersole pieces things together in a workmanlike way, but the tacky supertitles and camera effects often create a bit of an amateur feel.
Patty Schemel "lived through this." Once you witness what that "this" was, feel free to follow that up with a "wow."
An absorbing, educational, sad, humorous and ultimately uplifting film that is easily accessible and entertaining even for those not familiar with the grunge rock scene, or with the considerable role that Schemel played in that milieu.
Ebersol seems uncertain throughout of what tale he is telling, whether to focus on Schemel specifically or the larger picture of the band and the moments in contemporary rock history they were all witness to.
When the film does (eventually) focus on Schemel herself, it provides a fascinating insight into the pressures of the music business and a cautionary tale of life in the fast lane.
While this film documents drummer Patty Schemel's struggle with drug addiction, you can't help but feel that her main role in rock 'n' roll history has been as a first-hand witness to events more important and interesting than her own story.
Hole drummer Patty Schemel's feisty personality infuses this fast-paced film, which not only documents her rollercoaster experiences with drug addition but also provides a lucid exploration of the Seattle grunge scene.
Hit So Hard allows her to look back in candour as she reflects on her career and life ...
There's not enough of the music on view and the film would be a more effective portrait of that era if Ebersole had edited it more effectively.
Sadly, the film loses focus far too often but it's never far from illustrating why drugs and rock 'n' roll have always gone hand in hand.
Hit So Hard is a good title for the film. Courtney Love looks like someone determined to carry on doing the hitting.
As Hit So Hard broadens out to talk about Schemel's sexuality, it does offer some astute observations on the history of women in rock.
An entertaining and ultimately powerful and moving rockumentary that's something of a must-see for fans of grunge music and remains equally enjoyable for newcomers.
What hits hardest is how, without Cobain's talent, grunge's veneration of self-obsession/destruction really curdles.
Schemel herself, now six years sober, comes across so well, addressing incredibly sensitive issues in a self-effacing and honest manner.
Audience Reviews for Hit So Hard
I'm a 90's kids, it's the year I discovered all those lovely things like Sex, drugs and rock and roll. I was into the grunge scene, I had a very large baggy jumper (with holes), a curtain haircut (with undercut! oh yeah!) and a love of music that was far from lovely. I grew out of it like everyone else but I can still listen to Nirvana and think, yeah, that was a good time. I had tickets to see Nirvana a few months before Kurt Cobain's death but I sold them thinking that they'd be around a while, I'd catch them next time. It is in my top 10 personal worst regrets. Anyway, it was nice to see a documentary of a time I often struggle to remember, some of the unseen before now footage was a real treat. However, while watching I remembered something quite important. I loved the music but I didn't like the people. Kurt Cobain, Courtney Love, Kristen Pfaff etc, none of them were ever my idols, I just liked their music. As the documentary went on, I increasingly felt little emotion for any of them and came to the conclusion that none of them are very nice people or are worthy of praise. That probably sounds a little harsh but there are countless great bands that didn't make it but not through pissing their chances up the wall. Interesting to a point. The editing and narrative are fairly terrible too but thanks for the nostalgia trip.
Great documentary - anyone who liked Hole or even just that 90's era of women in rock would enjoy this. Interviews with Courtney Love, Veruca Salt etc. Nice flashback and also Patty's story is interesting. Got to say, Courtney does not come off too well here (but that's not surprising!).More
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