Brian Cox, Chris Easterly, Jason Gray
"Lithium Phoenix" is perhaps the biggest, best band ever assembled. The sheer talent - especially when considering song lyrics - is far better than those from the biggest, best songwriters you've ever heard. Their story is one of familiar successes and even more familiar failures. The parties, the groupies, and even the theft of their content - by other world-famous musicians are the stories of myth and legend. The "Lithium Phoenix" name and legacy has gone down in history - and now, decades later, they are at it again. Trying to reclaim all that was stolen from them - and pay their overdue bills in the meantime. "The Rise, Fall, and Rerise of Lithium Phoenix" is everything you'd expect in a biography about fame, hardships, and the rebuilding of an epic band... as if!
You see reader, that's the thing. If you're wondering why you've never heard of this groundbreaking musical group I can give you one solid answer. They never existed. That's right, this is a mockumentary featuring all the 80s hair and groupie stories you need - delivered in a package under twenty minutes. And yes, it is pretty damn funny - especially if you happen to be a musician. Yet even the casual Joe, who enjoys a good tune now and then, will find some comedy worth watching with this flick. It's cliche piled on cliche, piled on ridiculousness, with a touch of reality to make it all stick. The reality obviously is plucked from other cliche stories and band experiences - but it all still makes for a fun ride. Writers Brian Cox, Chris Easterly, and Jason Gray sure know how to pen out a good time - and it sure doesn't hurt that this short flick looks as good as it sounds.
So what do you write about a documentary referencing a band of performers that never existed? The story is all made up yet strangely familiar - but you know that it's all a line of BS. In cases like these, I like to fall back on the technical elements of a production, and with this one in particular, I liked what was showcased.
"The Rise, Fall, and Rerise of Lithium Phoenix" looks and sounds just like any other documentary/biography I've watched lately. And yes reader, I mean that as a compliment. Crazy silly content aside, for anyone not in the know, they could easily mistake this for a true life bio - although their perceptions would slowly change as the content continued to be revealed. Eventually, it becomes unmistakable that this is a mockumentary and story of a band that never existed. Yet still, it's all so silly that it's actually funny... and fun. There's not really a whole lot else to say on the technical elements. This film looks and sounds good, the pacing works, and it was entertaining. Need I write more?
When it's all said and done, this film works because it really, truly doesn't take itself all that seriously. And yet there's enough care given to the project, that it looks and sounds great - as it nudges out a few chuckles from its viewers. For those that simply don't understand the fun of a fake documentary, this is not a film for you. For the rest of us however, this was a quick, fun venture into the world of 80s hair bands, and the modern-day revival of such talents. Four stars.