October 19, 2004 (2004-10-19) (Copenhagen Gay and Lesbian Film Festival)
Rise Above: The Tribe 8 Documentary is a feature film directed and produced by Tracy Flannigan that documents the all women queercore punk band Tribe 8.
The film chronicles live performances, candid moments of their lives at work and on the road, and the controversy at the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival, an all women's music festival, that landed them in a quagmire of protest and praise from a fiercely divided crowd. It also captures the truly funny and warm people behind the music and the politics.
The images presented on stage of blow jobs, sadomasochistic acts and mock castrations are not shocking the audience for shock's sake, but understood on a deeper level through the band members' intense personal disclosures. As Chuck Wilson writes in LA Weekly, "Filmmaker Tracy Flannigan gets it all in close-up, but also captures the rich and complex life stories of these women, whose lives take on political weight based on sheer authenticity...". These interviews inform an understanding and respect for why they do what they do. Especially insightful are the interviews with singer Lynn Breedlove and her mother. This documentary concludes that it is the humor and physicality that lies within the controversial performance that gives these five individuals the peace to experience the rapture of being alive. Kevin Thomas, in the Los Angeles Times, says "...their lyrics are confrontational and political, but also cathartic...exudes the sheer exhilaration of individuals who have learned how to live liberated, fulfilling lives."
Dennis Harvey's review for Variety states the film is...“A suitably raw, wholly engaging documentary….offers a unique perspective on the lesbian community’s own shift …to a more encompassing embrace of rebellious fringe elements…".
The film has won many awards, including 'Best Documentary' at Frameline, San Francisco's Film Festival, 'Audience Award' at the Hamburg Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, and the award for "Outstanding Emerging Talent' at OUTfest, the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Film Festival.
Tribe 8 Band Members:
ReferencesRise Above: The Tribe 8 Documentary Wikipedia
Rise Above: The Tribe 8 Documentary IMDb Rise Above: The Tribe 8 Documentary themoviedb.org