This movie caught my attention on two different occasions. Once was in a magazine article, the other time was when I was browsing my local video store, but yet I still didn’t give it a look. I was drawn to it as if the film was something I needed to see. After watching it I understood why I needed to see it and I am happy that I did.
Heavy Metal in Baghdad is a documentary that follows the only Iraqi metal band ACRASSICAUDA through their trials and hardships trying to play the music that they love. The documentary follows the young musicians from the time of Saddam to the terrifying rise of insurgence after the American regime. The story is compelling and at times difficult to listen too. The sheer terror that is faced on the streets of Baghdad comes through loud and clear. An interview with two of the band members is given a chilling soundtrack set to the tune of fired guns. What is so sad is that for them this has become such a way of life that they seem hardly rattled by it.
Though the film is depressing in areas it has some lighter moments. The members of the band all find themselves in SYRIA putting on the first metal show ever held there. The turn out is small and there is talk amongst the band that if the show is a disaster that a breakup may be unavoidable, but the small crowd gives the band a run for their money and gives the members of ACRASSICAUDA a reason to keep pursuing their dream.
Heavy Metal in Baghdad is one of the most amazing and compelling documentaries I have ever seen. To see an Iraqi man that is close in age to myself wearing the shirt of one of my favorite bands (Slipknot) proves that no matter how much some people don't want to admit it, we as human beings are all the same. Our cultures, our beliefs, our ethnicities all may vary, but when you take all those small differences away you are left with one thing, that we all want the best for ourselves, our family and our world. For these reasons I strongly recommend Heavy Metal in Baghdad.
When the credits end look around on the internet because for the members of ACRASSICAUDA the story has just begun.