Coming of Age: After the CMJ Music Festival premiere of “The Perfect Age of Rock-n-Roll,” the film was picked up by Media 8 Distirbution and was released in Europe last week.
By Michael Plumides
In its 29th annum, The CMJ Music Festival (College Media Journal), premiered a number of “Feature films and music docs that have played in film fests around the world,” in 2009, “to add a new dimension to the three decade old gathering.”
Among them was the raucous indie yarn “Perfect Age of Rock-n-Roll,” which follows a pair of excommunicated friends, Kevin Zegers (TransAmerica) as Spyder, and Jason Ritter (Peter and Vandy) as Eric. Zegers’ Spyder is a spoiled but subdued ex-rock star, whose debut album was a huge hit, but after his sophomore effort flops, he is then forced to retreat to his hometown on Long Island.
Ritter plays Eric, the son of a legendary punk rock dad, who whiles away the hours as a bored-to-death music teacher with dreams of rock stardom. His ex-buddy Spyder left him behind for greener pastures (after stealing a number of his songs and venturing out to Hollywood). After years of separation, Zegers and Ritter reunite, although it’s not a happy reunion.
Eventually all is forgiven, and the two channel their talent and passion for music into a cross-country road trip with a hellish group of bandmates on Route 66 in a elderly Winnebago driven by Peter Fonda.
During their excursion down the legendary byway, the two are brought face-to-face with their angels and demons, personified by the various character actors who share the screen. The ensemble cast includes: Aimee Teegarden, Lucas Haas, Kelly Lynch, Billy Dee Williams, Lauren Holly, and Taryn Manning. Writer Jasin Cadic (Handful of Dust), along with NYC basher Marty Erspamer (The Dirty Pearls), play band members in Zeger and Ritter’s outfit, The Lost Soulz.
“The Perfect Age of Rock-n-Roll” refers to the age, 27, the cryptic numeral that so many famous young and vital rock stars have met their demise, including but not limited to: Kurt Cobain, Janis Joplin, Brian Jones, Jim Morrison, Robert Johnson, and Jimi Hendrix, all joining the hereafter before their time. You wonder if this turbulent trek might end in a Thelma and Louise-type fashion? I can’t say. You’ll just have to wait and see.
The film is helmed by first-time director, Scott Rosenbaum (who also co-wrote the film with Cadic). Rosenbaum had been developing the project for almost 7 years, and was originally a musician turned stock broker, and in recent years turned to film. Rosenbaum said of the festival, “I am really excited for the CMJ music and film savvy crowd to see ‘Perfect Age’. And as a NY based filmmaker, having the film’s NY premiere is a real thrill.” Joseph White, a producer on the film, commented on the NYC debut, saying, “We can’t wait for ‘The Perfect Age of Rock-n-Roll’ to open this year’s CMJ Film and Music Festival. I can’t think of a better place for a hardcore rock-n-roll movie to open, other than the hardcore CMJ Festival in NYC.”
Veteran Tom Richmond is the film’s Director of Photography.
The premiere resulted in Media 8 picking up the film for worldwide distribution.
Also appearing in the film are blues greats Hubert Sumlin and Sugar Blue. The film features an original score arranged by New York Doll, Steve Conte and Andrew Hollander, as well as music from Nirvana, Bob Dylan, Alice in Chains, Jane’s Addiction, and The Stooges.
“Perfect Age of Rock-n-Roll” won the “Outstanding Achevement in Filmmaking” award at the Newport Beach Film Festival this past April, and also showed at the Woodstock Film Festival earlier in October, where a number of the musicians who played in the film, performed after the showing.
I met with Cadic and Rosenbaum earlier this year to discuss a possible KILL THE MUSIC adaptation. Althought the guys are interested, nothing has been finalized. Presently, Rosenbaum, Cadic, and White have their hands full promoting the “Perfect Age” film, as well as their other side projects.
The film is presently gaining momentum in Eastern Europe, as the crew (Rosenbaum, White, and Ritter) went on a promotional tour for the film last week, first in Tallin, Estonia, and now in Amsterdam. The film has been well received in Europe and will soon be debuting in the U.S.
For more information on the film, go to:
Michael G. Plumides, Jr. is the author of the critically acclaimed indie book, entitled, KILL THE MUSIC, available on www.amazon.com. For more information, click the link below:
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