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pogo2posterFINAL2The Last Pogo Jumps Again studies the evolution of Toronto from small town to big city and it’s pop/counter-culture lifestyle during the early and mid-70s.  It centers around the first wave of Toronto punk rock and new-wave music, from the Ramones playing the New Yorker Theatre in ’76 through the police shutting down Teenage Head and causing a riot at the Horseshoe Tavern’s infamous “The Last Pogo” concert in December 1978.

London had the Sex Pistols, New York had the Ramones, but Toronto had a punk movement all it’s own.  The Toronto landscape by the late ’70s was forever changed with the infusion of the DIY/Punk/Alternative Culture(s) movement.  Six years in the making, The Last Pogo Jumps Again successfully explores the whys and wherefores of what was arguably one of the most exciting but misunderstood movements in Toronto’s history.

The DVD contains the 204 minute documentary, plus over a 100 minutes of added material, and a snazzy 24-page booklet.  Check the Shop for details on where you can purchase it.

The Last Pogo (1978) is the documentary that chronicled the last punk rock show at the Horseshoe Tavern when it was run by legendary Toronto promoters The Garys (Topp and Cormier) featuring The Scenics, Cardboard Brains, The Secrets, The Mods, The Ugly, The Viletones and Teenage Head. The Last Pogo was released on DVD in 2008 to great reviews.  Available at the Shop.

“More Canadian than a Molson delivery truck parked at a Tim Hortons.”

The Last Pogo is a short film shot in 1978 at Toronto’s iconic Horseshoe Tavern.  While it didn’t get a lot of notice when it was released (barring a popular VHS bootleg that made the rounds, and an article in the Toronto Star by Peter Goddard) it finally started getting a little attention when The Last Pogo Jumps Again was completed in 2013.

“The Last Pogo is so outrageously Canadian as to make Robbie, Joni, Garth and Neil look like a bunch of rank Topekans. It is in fact more Canadian than a Molson delivery truck parked at a Tim Hortons.” — Oliver Hall, Dangerous Minds.  Read the whole review here.

Those kinds by Mr. Hall are a far cry from 1979 when the half-hour film was released.  Filmmaker Colin Brunton was driving cab in ’80, just after the film was released, when he picked up Tony Torture, drummer for Toronto’s seminal punk band The Viletones, who were featured in the film.  Brunton introduced himself to Torture , and told him that he’d made The Last Pogo, and wanted to know what he thought of the film.  Drunk, disorderly, and with his hands all over his girlfriend, Tony succinctly summed it up by saying “It was a fucken piece of shit.”

 

Haitian voodoo doctor sporting a cool tee shirt.  Photo by Frank Polyak.

Is The Last Pogo a fucken piece of shit?  Is it a piece of punk history?  Or is it a fucken piece of shit punk history? Find out now by buying or renting it on Vimeo (just click here.) As a bonus feature, there’s a rare twenty minute studio set by The Scenics called “New Part in Town.”

 In 2006 Brunton and filmmaker Kire Paputts started shooting a sort of sequel/prequel, The Last Pogo Jumps Again, that focused on the Toronto/Hamilton/London scene circa 1976 – 1978. It was completed and released in 2013.  The DVD with special features and the cool booklet was sold out long ago, but don’t fret:  you can still rent or purchase the film on-line at Vimeo.  For part one, click here.  Part two, click here.  This is the three hour and twenty minute feature.
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