7.2/10
3,053
39 user 31 critic

The Decline of Western Civilization Part II: The Metal Years (1988)

Documentary showcase, what life was like for the music artists living during the Los Angeles Heavy Metal scene in the mid and late 1980s.

Director:

Penelope Spheeris

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Documentary | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The Decline of Western Civilization III is a 1998 documentary film that follows the gutter punk lifestyle of homeless teenagers.

Director: Penelope Spheeris
Stars: Stephen Chambers, Flea, Gary Fredo
Documentary | History | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The Los Angeles punk music scene circa 1980 is the focus of this film. With Alice Bag Band, Black Flag, Catholic Discipline, Circle Jerks, Fear, Germs, and X.

Director: Penelope Spheeris
Stars: Alice Bag Band, Black Flag, Catholic Discipline
Suburbia (1983)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

When household tensions and a sense of worthlessness overcome Evan, he finds escape when he clings with the orphans of a throw-away society.

Director: Penelope Spheeris
Stars: Chris Pedersen, Bill Coyne, Jennifer Clay
Documentary | Short | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A look at the wild scene outside a Judas Priest concert

Directors: John Heyn, Jeff Krulik
Musical | Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  

An entertaining combination of heavy-metal rockers and female mud wrestlers hosted by Jessica Hahn.

Director: Penelope Spheeris
Stars: Tawn Mastrey, Sam Mann, Jessica Hahn
Documentary | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A documentary following the 1982 tour of punk bands Youth Brigade and Social Distortion.

Directors: Adam Small, Peter Stuart
Stars: M. Otis Beard, Dennis Danell, Brent Liles
Hollywierd (1999)
Documentary | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Documents the making of BLOOD DOLLS, interviewing members of the cast and crew.

Director: Penelope Spheeris
Stars: Charles Band, William Paul Burns, Miles A. Copeland III
Documentary | History | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The History of American Punk Rock 1980-1986

Director: Paul Rachman
Stars: Greg Ginn, Ian MacKaye, James Drescher
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.8/10 X  

An engaged guy is forced by his future father-in-law to take a side job moonlighting as an exotic dancer in order to pay extravagant wedding neither of them can afford.

Director: Penelope Spheeris
Stars: Joe Hursley, Jenna Dewan, Dustin Ybarra
Documentary | Biography | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A film about the career of the notorious punk rock band, the Sex Pistols.

Director: Julien Temple
Stars: Paul Cook, Steve Jones, John Lydon
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A white man goes on trial for having raped a black woman.

Director: Penelope Spheeris
Stars: Richard Pryor, Franklyn Ajaye
Instrument (1999)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A collaboration between filmmaker Jem Cohen and the Washington D.C. band Fugazi, covering the 10 year period of 1987-1996. Far from a traditional documentary, this is a musical document; a ... See full summary »

Director: Jem Cohen
Stars: Brendan Canty, Joe Lally, Ian MacKaye
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Steven Tyler ... Himself
Joe Perry ... Himself
Alice Cooper ... Himself
Gene Simmons ... Himself
Paul Stanley ... Himself
Lemmy ... Himself
Ozzy Osbourne ... Himself
Bobby Dall Bobby Dall ... Himself (Poison bassist)
Bret Michaels ... Himself (Poison vocalist)
Rikki Rockett ... Himself (Poison drummer)
Joey Scott Harges Joey Scott Harges ... Himself
Gene Allen Gene Allen ... Himself
Mychal Davis Mychal Davis ... Himself
J. Holmes J. Holmes ... Himself
Mark Michals Mark Michals ... Himself
Edit

Storyline

Documentary showcase, what life was like for the music artists living during the Los Angeles Heavy Metal scene in the mid and late 1980s.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It's more than music...it's a way of life.

Genres:

Documentary | Music

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Official Site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 August 1989 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

O Declínio da Civilização do Ocidente - Os Anos do Metal See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$45,008, 5 June 1988

Gross USA:

$373,743

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$373,743
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The footage of London was filmed in director Penelope Spheeris' garage, as the members of London did not have homes at the time the movie was filmed. The hot tub Odin was filmed in belonged to Spheeris as well. Likewise, the footage of Aerosmith and of Ozzy Osbourne were filmed in a producer's house. Chris Holmes' pool scene was also shot at the producer's house. See more »

Goofs

Megadeth drummer Chuck Behler's last name is misspelled as "Beehler" in the end credits. This is not corrected on the DVD/Blu-ray release. See more »

Quotes

Lemmy: It's fast and it's aggressive and it's rebellious and their parents hate it, which has always been the mark of good rock and roll. If your parents don't like it, it's good.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Chuck Behler's last name is misspelled as "Beehler" in the end credits. This is not corrected on the DVD/Blu-ray. See more »

Connections

References Batman (1966) See more »

Soundtracks

In My Darkest Hour
Written by Dave Mustaine and Dave Ellefson
Performed by Megadeth
EMI Music Publishing LTD/Theory Music
Produced by Dave Mustaine and Paul Lani
Mixed by Michael Wagener for Double Trouble Productions
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A walk down memory lane...(wince)
25 May 2006 | by micame-1See all my reviews

As a former metal groupie (the horror!), when I saw this depiction of the lonely lives and substance-riddled minds of my heroes, it actually inspired me to go to college! It is a poignant, wistful, sad, and insightful look at a genre of music that instilled fear in the hearts of parents(well, at least in mine), and a venue for teens to unleash their anger toward a misunderstanding world.

The best kind of musical documentary is always done best through the eyes of a true fan, and Penelope Spheeris is no exception. While to the casual viewer the film may seem shallow and all fluff (which is how the LA metal was widely portrayed), if one looks past the hair, excess, bravado, t & a, and flowing alcohol,it is easy to uncover the painfully lonely, opportunistic, naiveté' of the struggling bands, and even some of those who "made it." The scene with Chris Holmes guzzling vodka in his pool was simply heartbreaking...and the expressions on his mother's face were fully able to convey her harsh reality. Some of the "classic" performers... Aerosmith, Ozzy, and Lemmy were able to reflect on the business with some learned wisdom, while Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons attempted to convey a fantasy life that appeared way too scripted and laughable (I'm still a huge KISS fan, though). One interesting element in viewing the film almost 20 years later, is how some of the bands downplayed or sidestepped the issue of drug use (note the expressions on their faces when substances are discussed), then appear on "Behind the Music" years later to reveal their debilitating addictions.

Having been involved peripherally in the scene for a few years, I can say that Spheeris' portrayal was 100% accurate based on what I witnessed. I would've liked to have seen the inclusion of other important bands of the LA scene (Motley Crue, Skid Row, etc), and a separate documentary highlighting British metal (Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest)would've been fantastic.

It was a fun, irreverent, and exciting time! I can look back at it and laugh since I emerged relatively unscathed... although I am somewhat embarrassed by the extraordinary heights of my hair and the plunging depths of my blouses in "86.


29 of 33 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 39 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed