Miles Fielder shakes his mane as filmmaker JOE BERLINGER tells him why METALLICA are SOME KIND OF MONSTER.

‘The whole thing is just a happy accident,‘ says documentary maker Joe Berlinger. ‘We thought it would be a little music promo film. When we started this thing three years ago I never imagined we‘d be going on a whirlwind press tour with all this positive attention from non-fans that are seeing it as a serious documentary.’ What started life as a record label-funded promotional project for the recording of Metallica’s first studio album evolved into a sprawling two and a half hour documentary that charts the band‘s deeply dysfunctional darkest hours and their efforts, through the very non- rock‘n‘roll medium of group therapy, to get it together. The finished film which the band themselves took over the funding of when their label baulked at what Berlinger and creative partner Bruce Sinofsky had created is about to

be unleashed into cinemas. Joe Berlinger (standing, left), Bob Richman, Michael Emery, and There‘s no doubting the serious intent of both Bruce Sinofsky shoot Metallica: Some Kind of Monster the filmmakers and the band, but while the film’s on-the-couch approach to its subjects reveals of Metallica to hold onto a bass player, to one of Berlinger‘s got a point. Even if you can‘t help more about them than, say, DA Pennebaker‘s the band members exclaiming, ‘lt‘s a bit of a shit but laugh at frontman James Hetfield explaining acclaimed Bob Dylan doc Don’t Look Back (in sandwich‘ (a phrase coined by Spinal Tap in in a therapy session: ‘The way I learned to love which opaque Bob remains an enigma), critical relation to their fictional album, Shark things was just to choke ‘em to death,‘ and the Metallica: Some Kind of Monster is also Sandwich). fact that it remains a promotional tool of a kind, unintentionally very funny. That’s largely because ‘At its most simplistic the comparison works, you‘ve got to admire the optimism and openness we‘ve seen these kind of off-stage antics because it’s about seeing the band as human of the endeavour. ‘The rockumentary usually puts parodied to hilarious effect in Rob Reiner‘s beings,’ says Berlinger, evidently weary of the these guys on a pedestal.‘ says Berlinger. ‘And enduringly popular ‘mockumentary’, This is comparisons being made between his film and here they are willingly allowing themselves to be Spinal Tap. Although that film was made 20 years Reiner‘s. ‘But we‘re not lampooning Metallica, taken off the pedestal. We had an opportunity to ago, there are striking similarities, from the we’re taking their problems and their journey very turn the rock documentary on its head.‘ somewhat dim lead guitarist’s enormous seriously. We’re breaking down the stereotypes I fair .; ‘r v ' .' 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