Skip to content

What’s new on Kanopy: Lydia Lunch: The War is Never Over by Beth B

    I am in the mood for a good flick this weekend. Kanopy to the rescue. It pays to have a library card. With a limit of five films per month, Lydia Lunch: The War is Never Over by Beth B is getting my full attention this weekend. I honestly do not know much about Beth B, so this should be a treat.

    LYDIA LUNCH: THE WAR IS NEVER OVER by Beth B is the first career-spanning documentary retrospective of Lydia Lunch’s confrontational, acerbic and always electric artistry. As New York City’s preeminent No Wave icon from the late ’70s, Lunch has forged a lifetime of music and spoken word performance devoted to the utter right of any woman to indulge, seek pleasure, and raise her voice in a rage as loud as any man. The film frames Lunch’s work through the lens of the various philosophical themes that have obsessed her for years to enlighten and empower women to voice the unheard and to break the cycle of violence toward women throughout the world. Lydia Lunch is the psychosexual transgressive who revoked patriarchal expectations of what a female performer might meanwhile forging a vocabulary of rare emotional honesty, philosophy and humor.

    LYDIA LUNCH: THE WAR IS NEVER OVER includes interviews with Lydia Lunch and longtime collaborators and colleagues including Thurston Moore of Sonic Youth; performance artist Kembra Pfahler; Teenage Jesus bass player, Jim Sclavunos; Donita Sparks from L7; famed DJ and musician Nicolas Jaar; Art Critic Carlo McCormick; Filmmaker Richard Kern and a long list of other groundbreaking artists connected to Lunch’s past and present. Filming in rehearsal and on tour with her band Retrovirus, the behind-the-scenes footage reveals a side of Lunch’s personality that has been unseen. Her warmth and generosity in private interactions along with hilarious banter in the rehearsal studio with band members contrast wonderfully with her brash, assaultive style of performance. The film is not only about Lunch, but about the scene that she helped spawn, continues to grow and influence, and the creative people who join her in creating a new vision of a woman.

    Tony M.