My Degeneration (1990) VHS cover

director Jon Moritsugu
viewed: 03/03/2017

Heralded last year in Rolling Stone’s “25 Greatest Punk Rock Movies of All Time” at #15, Jon Moritsugu’s 1990 My Degeneration is legit. The list, like any list, has its points, and it also has its failings. But My Degeneration is served well and has true punk cred.

It’s a rise and fall story of a band, not unlike Desperate Teenage Lovedolls (1984) or Lovedolls Superstar (1986) before it. But Moritsugu’s aims and aesthetics are far grungier, perhaps with a particular affront to art school, and featuring outre weirdness of a rotting pig’s head as a potential romantic lead/demon.

It’s got music by Government Issue, Halo of Flies, Vomit Launch and Poison Idea, too.

The gals of Bunny-Love, the band at the center of things, make a deal with the beef industry to promote and shill beef. So is selling out selling out if you did it from the get-go?

I have very few claims to fame of having known any filmmakers, but I did know Jon Moritsugu and even interviewed him for a class I had as an undergrad in the early 1990’s. He’s a cool guy and already in My Degeneration Amy Davis, his longtime love and muse and partner appears as the drummer of the group.

Low-fi punk rockness.