Fested, A Journey to Fest 7: DVD

Nov 24, 2010

Here’s where I get to pull out my Andy Rooney. I’ve been going to Fest for years now, just about as long as I’ve been contributing here.  I’ve gone from taking a daylong bus trip by myself on a whim just to see a handful of bands I like to making plans to see dozens of friends for four days a year (that’s counting Tampa on Thursday). At its core, this is a documentary about a group of friends in a band going to play the Fest and what they see and do for the weekend. Simple enough. I’ve had some great times at the Fest myself, so I’m a little bummed I didn’t enjoy this more.

My main problem is that a lot of this focuses way too much on smaller groups than a bigger picture. Prime example: a lot of people seem to think that sitting around with their friends drinking and doing nothing else is a lot more exciting and fun to watch than it really is. Not that I want to be a stick in the mud (okay, I kind of do, but I digress), but would people who don’t know us be entertained by me and Matt Army sitting around, talking about The Office? Or Jennifer Whiteford and I sitting around talking about The Office?

Plus, excessive drinking leads to some cringe-worthy moments and quotes (“Uh, so are you going to do anything to help that guy who passed out on the street after hitting his head, or just keep the tape rolling while people point and laugh?”) You get the idea. The other bummer is that for all the variety of shows (you’ve got your pop punk, hardcore, indie rock, folk punk, and that’s still vastly generalizing), there’s a pretty limited window of what’s represented on here. The box lists a lot of bands I like, but then usually just have a song played in the background (“Oh, nice. Fleshies are on here. Oh, I see…”). Maybe I’m being a hypocrite, because I will admit that if there were more people I knew and were friends with those people on this, I’d probably be a lot warmer to it and enjoy it a lot more. If nothing else—regarding the “Best stage dives” bonus feature—can we agree once and for all that stage diving is dumb and something you’d expect from a bunch of frat dudes at Warped Tour? –Joe Evans III (Blue Elephant Media)