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Runaways, The


Stars: Kristen Stewart, Dakota Fanning, Michael Shannon, Alia Shawkat, Scout Taylor-Compton, Stella Maeve, Brett Cullen. Riley Keough

Director: Floria Sigismondi

Just when it looks like going on all night, this musical biopic about Joan Jett (Stewart) and her all-girl rock group suddenly ends, and you have to wonder whether the story was worth telling at all.

The girls form at 15, joined by Cherie Currie (Fanning) as lead singer; we see them do a couple of numbers (with such lyrics as 'I'm a blue-eyed bitch and I wanna be rich') and a shedload of drugs.

There are lots of shots of the girls not doing very much, and some lesbian kisses, while Shannon lets it all hang out as the preening manager who tells the band: 'I'm gonna get you prima donnas to think with your cocks.'

The girls have lots of aggression on stage, if not a lot of singing talent, while the songs themselves are unmemorable. Movie buffs may recognise one-time child star Tatum O'Neal in early shots as Joan's mother, and an epilogue tells us that Cherie now works as a chainsaw artist. Now there's an idea for a film.

David Quinlan

USA 2010. UK Distributor: e1 films. Colour by FotoKem.
106 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 18.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 2, Swearing 3.

Review date: 07 Sep 2010