Review: The Dirt

Review: The Dirt

28th March 2019 Off By Ewan Gleadow

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Motley Crue aren’t a band I thought I’d be so familiar with, but as it turns out there’s more than one song I know from them.

In that case, getting through The Dirt should’ve been a breeze, when in actual fact it felt like a nightmare that couldn’t possibly end soon enough.  That tends to happen when the guy that directed all of the Jackass movies directs his first fully scripted movie. I’m not saying the Jackass movies are bad, but let’s face it, they’re not remembered for their direction now, are they? 

Starring a whole host of faces I simply don’t recognise, The Dirt follows Motley Crue on their escapades as an up-and-coming rock band in the 1980s. Now I know what you’re thinking, didn’t we get a very similar movie about a different band just last year? Well, yes, that’s true and Bohemian Rhapsody was alright. Now though, it seems studios are set on creating a biopic about every band or musical icon to come out of the 70s and 80s.  

Rocketman and the untitled David Bowie biopic are already underway, and it seems there’ll be no shortage of this style of moviemaking. 

Already the tropes are beginning to show. Live performances and recreations of iconic gigs are being used as filler or montage shots to pad out the pacing. The Dirt does this a hefty amount, dragging out its runtime to almost two hours when in actual fact it has roughly a half hour of story to tell. Although it may stick to the truth somewhat, its omissions are highlighted by the movie itself. Showing that you haven’t done something right (for example how the band met their manager) doesn’t mean it’s a free pass to breaking the continuity and, more criminally, the fourth wall.  

But the problems stretch further in regard to the performances, which are pretty bland all round. Machine Gun Kelly is still set on being an actor, so until that Justin Timberlake-like phase is over, we’ve got to put up with his meandering roles in drivel like The Dirt and Bird Box. Having said that, his performance in this movie is the best part, sheerly because he is the least annoying member of the cast, and that’s no small feat. 

The Dirt is solely salvaged by a fairly solid soundtrack that is limited only by the output of Motley Crue themselves. Luckily, they’ve got at least two hits to get us through the movie, it’s just a shame that the movie follows such a poorly planned out formula, similar to the one used by Bohemian Rhapsody.

Not worth watching in the slightest, not even for the most die-hard Crue fan.