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Lipsitz, Alexandra (Director)
Air Guitar Nation (DVD)
March 2015
Released: 2007, Maple Pictures
Rating: 3.0/5
Reviewer: JP

The concept of ‘Air-Guitar’ seems to be quite polarizing. Some think it is awesome and some think it is stupid. In my experiences, musicians seem to be less appreciative of it and non-guitarists like it because it plays into the fantasy of being a Guitar Hero, without actually having to learn to play, buy gear or practice. The segment of people who do like ‘Air-Guitar’ seems to be pretty large because there are actually Regional, National and International competitions and this is the story of AIR GUITAR NATION.

This 2007 documentary is pretty bare bones… There is no booklet, the film itself only runs 81 minutes and the bonus features are merely spotlights on the players in the game. The documentary essentially follows a couple of participants as they compete in the 2003 (American) National Air guitar championships. The drama them follows over to Finland for the World Championships…the first time Americans ever competed in the World’s. There is a bit of personal drama and lots of footage of the main contestants getting ready and performing.

There is not really much to this documentary, it is pretty straight-forward but I found the people and the story to be extremely engaging. The whole contest and concept is meant to be one of fun and while some take it seriously, most participants, see it for what it is, performance art set to music. The music/soundtrack is great! It’s well established that some of the best (real) guitarists are from the Hard Rock and Metal realms so the songs picked are often Hard Rock and Metal, making the soundtrack very enjoyable. Kiss, Queen, The Darkness, Judas Priest, David Lee Roth, Motorhead and Extreme all combine to make a rocking’ soundtrack.

Overall, this is a simple, fun film an interesting glimpse into a fun hobby/competition that for a few brief seconds show as that we can all be Air Guitar Gods.
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