RADIATION

90 Minutes  1999

A young Spaniard music promoter (Unai Fresnedo) finds himself in trouble when a club owner refuses to pay him for a gig and his drug supplier is pressuring him for money. With another band (Come) waiting for him at the airport, he goes on the run with hopes of shaking out some cash that never comes. Ignacio Fernandez is his long-suffering partner and Katy Petty is a performance artist seeking to get her big break.

FEATURING: Unai Fresnedo. Katy Petty, Ignacio Fernandez, Thalia Zedek, Chris Brokaw, Daniel Coughlin, Sean Meadows, Maria Fleischman, Lee Robinson

ABOUT THE FILM

 

Unai is a cynical Spaniard who books American indie bands up and down the Iberian peninsula. Exhausted and disenchanted, at the tail end of youth, with nothing to show for his years of struggle beyond an empty wallet and a tenacious speed habit, Unai struggles to remember why he got into rock and roll in the first place. Then he meets Mary, an impulsive Lower East Side artist who captivates him with a punk spirit he feels he has lost. He invites her to join his tour, but the enterprise quickly collapses into an all-too-familiar routine of chiseling club owners, shifty speed pushers, and rude patrons. Faced with the prospect of a dead-end life, Unai is forced to make an extreme and desperate decision. Radiation is the second collaboration from Hawley and Galinsky, veterans of the indie-rock world. The film includes appearances and performances by Stereolab, Come, Will Oldham, Two Dollar Guitar and El Inquilino Communista.

 

“One of the most original films about the music biz this reviewer has ever seen, Radiation follows the non-exploits of scheming promoter Unai (Unai Fresnedo), who sees his musical ambitions turn to dust as he screws up a European tour for indie darlings Come and then hopelessly tries to set things straight by halfheartedly screwing over everyone within three feet. ….Radiation hits the nail on the head when it comes to its portrayal of the lower echelons of the indie music world. Fresnedo, who in real life is — surprise! — an indie music promoter, is amazing in his role. Is he live or Memorex? This blurring of the line between artistic fiction and reality is disquieting to say the least, and directors Suki Hawley and Michael Galinsky clearly know whereof they film.” – MARC SAVLOV, THE AUSTIN CHRONICLE

 

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