Reviewer's Rating 3 out of 5  
Live Forever (2003)
15

In a time when any spiky-haired moppet can become a pop idol, it's easy to forget the Britpop phenomenon that took the nation by storm in the 90s.

"Wonderwall", "Parklife", and "Common People" became the soundtrack of a generation, with Damon Albarn, Jarvis Cocker and the Gallaghers its outspoken spokesmen.

Now the story of that era is retold in "Live Forever", a feature-length documentary from the makers of "One Day in September" that takes an affectionate look back at Britpop, Cool Britannia, and Lad Culture.

Beginning with the Stone Roses' legendary Spike Island gig in 1990, director John Dower charts the heady days of Britpop. He focuses on pivotal moments like the Blur/Oasis chart battle and Noel Gallagher's much-derided visit to 10 Downing Street.

Along the way Our Kid, Jarvis, and a ukulele-strumming Albarn offer saltily profane reminiscences, while various talking heads - Loaded's James Brown, gob-for-hire Toby Young and Sleeper lead singer Louise Wener - give their take on events.

Some contributions are hilariously pompous (Wener describing Liam and Noel as "their own nation state"), while others are simply baffling.

Dower devotes far too much screen time to a two-bit Oasis tribute band with risible delusions of grandeur, and what Peter Mandelson is doing here is anyone's guess.

Taken as a whole, however, this is an entertaining and illuminating survey of a seminal moment in recent history that's miles better than all those Top Ten and I Love... shows currently clogging up the tube.

End Credits

Director: John Dower

Writer: John Dower

Stars: Noel Gallagher, Liam Gallagher, Jarvis Cocker, Damon Albarn, Louise Wener

Genre: Documentary

Length: 86 minutes

Cinema: 7 March 2003

Country: UK

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