Metallica: Some Kind of Monster (2004)
Critic Consensus: Fascinating behind-the-scenes look at how Metallica survives one of their more turbulent periods.
Award-winning filmmakers Bruce Sinofsky and Joe Berlinger (of the Paradise Lost films on HBO) direct Metallica: Some Kind of Monster, a documentary about rock stars in therapy. After 20 years of heavy metal, a few members of Metallica decide to hire psychologist Phil Towle to work out some group tensions during the making of their album St. Anger. Most of the therapy sessions involve drummer Lars Ulrich and singer/guitarist James Hetfield, with some input from guitarist Kirk Hammett. Also included are former band members Dave Mustaine of Megadeth and ex-bassist Jason Newsted. The band works through difficulties in group dynamics, personal demons, and relationship issues. The film shows recording sessions as well as therapy sessions, including the recruitment of bassist Robert Trujillo. The much-publicized controversies of Internet file-sharing and Hetfield's drug rehabilitation are also discussed. In 2003, Metallica released the album St. Anger on Elektra Records. Metallica: Some Kind of Monster was shown at the Sundance Film Festival in 2004 as part of the American Spectrum competition. … More
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Critic Reviews for Metallica: Some Kind of Monster
Fans of the band will love the revealing footage, especially landmark moments such as bassist auditions (more famous names showed up than the one they picked) and encounters with the ex-Metallica members (Newsted and Megadeth frontman Dave Mustaine).
A mostly terrific documentary about a mostly terrible album. Despite derisory poor-me whining, it captures fragility and fear in Metallica's questioned relevancy, considered disbandment and the closest things to tears they can muster for each other.
Metallica: Some Kind Of Monster is a masterpiece of rock 'n roll documentary filmmaking, and has set the bar high for those who attempt it in the future.
Overlong, but interesting documentary of heavy metal band Metallica.
Audience Reviews for Metallica: Some Kind of Monster
A knitty-gritty documentary on the greatest heavy metal band in history. The in-depth prospective and real-life struggle of the aging forefathers of thrash is a unique vision that makes every emotion as loud and powerful as the notes and chords strummed or drumbeat. 4.5/5
Some Kind of Monster is a wonderful look into a band that is gradually falling apart. To be quite honest though, it was nowhere near as bad as I had been led to believe. Sure there are some spats between band mates, but it never got to violent excess. In fact, all it did show was their passion as each one believed in what was right for the music. At one point Lars even agrees, when discussing the naming of the album, as he didn't see Frantic as having any negative connotations. This shows a band where a member has just left and another is battling addiction. Of course there are going to be some arguments. I felt that above all this showed a band of 20 years continuing to mature. There are some very emotional moments, such as the scene with Dave Mustaine, as he talks about feeling betrayed and number 2 for all these years. The chemistry between Hetfield and Ulrich is that of a married couple prone to arguing, but you can still feel the love. As for Hammett, he is their awkward child stuck in the middle hoping it's all gonna be alright. A great film about music, business, passion, and ego.
When I was in my early teens, I was a diehard Metallica fan. In fact their 1984 album 'Ride The Lightning" is responsible for my love of Heavy Metal music. Unfortunately came many events such as the infamous Napster lawsuit and the like. For years we Metallica fans wanted a new record, and we got "St Anger" a raw, gritty stripped album of Metallica's famous sound, this film shows how that album came to be. The film takes a rather unorthodox look at how a Metal band is trying to pull through by having a group therapist session so they can discuss their issues as a band. This is a stunning portrait of one of Heavy Metal's most beloved bands as they hit rock bottom. For us, the fans, it's interesting, but it's also painful to watch. Seeing Lars Ulrich whine like a baby constantly was a joke and all. I thought the documentary was good, but it was just two guys not Seeing Eye to eye for two hours. I mean you'd never see this type of crap from Iron Maiden, Judas Priest and other Metal Icons. It's sad to see one of Metal's toughest bands go into this downward spiral, but at the same it's cool. However, I would've loved to see a documentary on the band sort of like Sam Dunn's Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage. Maybe one day Metallica fans will get that. Until then, we have a brutally honest documentary that has its great moments, but it's definitely not an iconic documentary.
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