The controversial San Francisco-based d**e punk band Tribe 8 has been playfully assaulting queer and straight-boy crowds for over a decade with their fierce, often funny brand of rock anarchy.
“Rise Above: The Tribe 8 Documentary” screens at OutFest 2003 (July 10-21), on Monday, July 14th at 9:15 pm and Sunday, July 20th at Noon, both screenings at the Village Theatre at Ed Gould Plaza.
The following is a statement from the filmmaker, Tracy Flannigan:
I was first compelled to make the documentary Rise Above when I saw the d**e punk rock band Tribe 8 perform at South by Southwest in 1998. I immediately recognized in them a unique ability to confront difficult issues head-on with candor and humor and I appreciated the satirical spirit with which they approached otherwise uncomfortable themes of sexuality and power.

From the beginning, I saw an opportunity to look beneath the surface of the band’s outrageous stage behavior and see the humanity of these five performers who might otherwise seem shocking and bizarre to a mainstream audience.

As I got to know them better, I recognized that many of the circumstances the band members have worked so hard to transcend through their cathartic performances, mirrored those I’ve worked to overcome through my own filmmaking. Such similarities between my subjects and myself allowed for a candor and an openness in the filmmaking process which gave a greater depth to our work together than I ever could have hoped for going in.

As a filmmaker, I’ve always been drawn to what is commonly overlooked or marginalized. In the case of Rise Above, it is through lead-singer Lynn Breedlove’s irreverent parody of male rock-star posing that I’ve been able to reveal a broad spectrum of male and female power dynamics that I feel is too often missing from mainstream media. In addition, through exploring the childhood histories and personal lives of all the band members, we have, I believe, created a universal story whose relevance and appeal extends beyond their cult audience.

From watching this film at festivals and screenings with audiences all over the world, I see the important expansion of Tribe 8’s audience to include people who would never have the benefit of their irreverence, intelligence and transcendence.
For more information, visit the Outfest website.

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