Basically, Johnny Moped

  • Fred Burns
  • England
  • 2013
  • 77 min
  • Dutch Premiere
  • Music Documentary
Back in the 1970s, the London-based punk band Johnny Moped regularly performed in the famous club The Roxy. The band members were schoolboys from the London suburb of Croydon, unimpeded by any musical talent. With their recalcitrant attitude, unruly music and the bravura of enigmatic front man Paul Halford, the group landed firmly on its feet in the emerging punk rock scene. But although they were able to keep up with the big names of the day, and even got a record deal, the band never succeeded in attracting a wide audience. In interviews, members of the group and a collection of eccentric eyewitnesses to British music history look back at the punk era and try to work out what went wrong. Was the band's ultimate failure attributable to Halford's drinking, opposition from his in-laws, or his elusiveness? Former band members such as singer Chrissie Hynde (who went on to form the Pretenders) and guitarist Captain Sensible (who happens to be the filmmaker"s father) tell the distinctive story of the rise and fall of this punk legend, their obscure cult status and related excesses.  Atmospheric gig footage and the weathered faces of the punks interviewed – now well into middle age – paint an entertaining and poignant nostalgic picture of a special era.


  • 77 min
  • color
  • video
  • Spoken languages: English
Fred Burns
Fred Burns
Executive producer
Christopher Hird for Dartmouth Films, Martin Kelly for Heavenly Films Limited
Fred Burns
Fred Burns

IDFA history

Dutch Premiere
Music Documentary

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