(Dir. Julien Temple, Great Britain, 1980, 103 min., English, color)
The Great Rock ‘n’ Roll Swindle is Sex Pistols’ manager Malcolm McLaren's attempt to write himself into history as the band's creator, manipulator and ideologue, and to steal back from the music industry what he felt it had stolen from rock & roll. Julien Temple's bizarre and hilarious fictional documentary charts the rise and fall of punk's most notorious band through the eyes of its calculating manager. Mixing animation and live footage of some of the Pistols' most electrifying performances, the film presents the band's success as an elaborate scam perpetrated by McLaren to make "a million pounds" at the expense of record companies, outraged moralists, the British royal family, and even the fans and band members themselves.
Image courtesy of Virgin Films.