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New York Dolls - Lookin' Fine On Television (2011)

New York Dolls  |  NR |  DVD
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)

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New York Dolls - Lookin' Fine On Television + New York Dolls - All Dolled Up + New York Dolls: Photographs
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Product Details

  • Actors: New York Dolls
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: MVD VISUAL
  • DVD Release Date: November 22, 2011
  • Run Time: 73 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B005IGVTHE
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #259,748 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

The legendary and infamous New York Dolls at their best! Amazing rare live clips and interviews filmed by Bob Gruen and Nadya Beck in the heady days of the band's ascension in the 70s. Footage from early shows in NYC all the way to the TV studios, clubs and swimming pools of Los Angeles. Black and white film was never so colorful! Includes ripping versions of ""Personality Crisis,"" ""Who Are the Mystery Girls?"" ""Babylon"" and more. See the incredible early days of the band that influenced generations of punks and rockers.

Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
(8)
3.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Victor Valdivia, DVD Verdict --It's crude, lo-fi, difficult to look at and listen to, and thoroughly unpolished. Which, of course, is exactly why you should see it as a true representation of the New York Dolls. This was a band that made its reputation in the early '70s as one of the crudest, rawest, most ramshackle rock 'n' roll outfits of the era, and you'll get no better idea of just how ferocious they were live than this DVD collection.

Lookin' Fine on Television compiles videotaped performances from the New York Dolls from various concerts in 1973 and 1974. Singer David Johansen, guitarists Johnny Thunders and Sylvain Sylvain, bassist Arthur "Killer" Kane, and drummer Jerry Nolan perform these songs:

* "Lookin' for a Kiss"
* "Babylon"
* "Trash"
* "Bad Detective"
* "Vietnamese Baby"
* "Bad Girl"
* "Chatterbox"
* "Human Being"
* "Private World"
* "Subway Train"
* "Personality Crisis"
* "Frankenstein"
* "Who Are the Mystery Girls?"
* "Jet Boy"

These are early-'70s videotapes, which means black-and-white video and very grainy and fuzzy video at that. Similarly, the sound quality is less than stellar. The disc comes with stereo and 5.1 surround mixes (although there are no menu options to choose one; you'll have to use your "audio" button to cycle between them), and both are fairly rough. The surround mix does sound "fuller" but the stereo mix sounds closer to what the original quality is, so in many ways the sound quality is a bit of a wash. Back then, videotape was in its infancy and lacked the quality of film, but was at least cheaper. For a struggling band like the Dolls (who only released two albums, neither of which sold particularly well), it was an ideal way to catalogue their live shows.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars TV or not TV? March 5, 2012
Verified Purchase
I'm not sure why this is called "Looking Fine On Television," when there is precious little actual TV footage included (maybe they meant MY television?) A lot of this stuff showed up in "All Dolled Up," but there are some interesting alternate takes included. There's also not a whole lot of Arthur since he was out of commission for most of this LA tour. Hopefully someone will someday put together a proper TV compilation featuring Dolls' appearances from their heyday.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars FAB! November 26, 2011
Although I'm a longtime fan, I've seen relatively little footage of the Dolls live in action from their vintage glory days. Consequently, for me, this was a real treat. The often grainy black and white videography only enhances the band's infamous garage-type image. In fact, had the production been any slicker, it would have likely diminished their mystique. I found the behind-the-scenes bits and interview segments, particularly Lisa Robinson's poolside interviews with David and Johnny to be revealing and insightful. In short, I'm more than satisfied with this one!

-Christopher Long
(Author)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
This New York Dolls video looks rough, washed-out in places and gritty. It's shot in full-screen and it's all in black and white. It looks like it may have been recovered from a nasty trash can on lower 42nd street. You can almost smell the decay coming from it. You know what? For the New York Dolls, that's a compliment, and all of these things I've mentioned just make the film more endearing to the fans.

Interspersed between each song we get an interview snippet from members of the band. While not much light is shed on them from these little gems, you can hear the decadence of 1970's New York in their voices, their comments, and you can see it in their faces. They were a band that was made for the clubs of New York. Imagine if the Rolling Stones had formed as a loud rock/punk act in the dirty clubs of the area, and you have yourself a good idea of what the Dolls are. Lead singer David Johansen is practically a Mick Jagger clone. Big lips, big attitude, and big voice. Let's take a look at their Wikipedia entry to find out the bands history.

[Wikipedia]
Sylvain Sylvain and Billy Murcia, who went to junior high school and high school together, started playing in a band called "the Pox" in 1967. After the frontman quit, Murcia and Sylvain started a clothing business called "Truth and Soul" and Sylvain took a job at "A Different Drummer", a men's boutique that was across the street from the New York Doll Hospital, a doll repair shop. Sylvain claimed that the shop inspired the name for their future band. In 1970 they formed a band again and recruited Johnny Thunders to join on bass, though Sylvain ended up teaching him to play guitar. They called themselves the "Dolls.
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