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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.

The terrible twos

As of June 6th, it’s been two years since we started shooting THE LAST POGO JUMPS AGAIN. Yup, that’s correct: we started shooting this opus on 6/6/6. Weird. Since then, shooting every weekend or so, with lots of help from other filmmakers, we’ve compiled around 150 hours of footage, discovered never-before-seen super-8 footage of The Last Pogo concert, heard never-before-heard tapes of the evening, re-connected with lots of old pals, made up with old flames, visited too many grave-yards, watched young Ollie Brunton turn from a boy into a man, had lots of laughs, and have been gifted with tons of photos, handbills, high-school essays, buttons, stories, lies, rumours and gossip and more.

As we get set to show THE LAST POGO for the first time in almost 30 years (at NXNE; Sunday June 15th, 5:30) we rediscovered those pesky things called “self-imposed deadlines”, and looking over a calendar, made a real adult decision: we’re now going to aim to have the new film completed early 2009, just in time for the Hot Docs festival. In the meantime, back at the ranch, we’ll be putting out a fairly awesome DVD of The Last Pogo and some surprises just in time for Christmas. We’re going to add on a couple of other shorts by filmmaker Colin Brunton: The Mysterious Moon Men of Canada, with soundtrack by Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet, and A Trip Around Lake Ontario, with soundtrack by Nash the Slash.

We’ve just got too much footage to go through and analyze and dissect and mess around with, and there’s still a ton of people we wanna talk to so we’re gonna do it right.

We’ve chatted with members of all the bands that were there that night — Scenics, Cardboard Brains, Secrets, Mods, Ugly, Viletones and Teenage Head — and lots of the irregulars that were such a part of the scene — Tank, Wayne Brown, Zero, Roger T-Bag, Margarita Passion, Gary Topp, Don Pyle, Tony Malone, Nash the Slash, Cleave Anderson, Blair Richard Martin, Barrie Farrell, Edie Steiner, and on and on. We’ve been slowly trying to catch up with some of the international bands that made their way through Toronto during those heady daze: so far Cheetah Chrome from The Dead Boys (interviewed in a grave-yard, natch), and Tommy Ramone from The Ramones (in front of the Pogo Mobile), and if you’re reading this, we hope to snag Hugh Cornwell from The Stranglers while he’s in town for NXNE. (Hugh? ARE you reading this? C’mon, Hugh, pleeeese! 15 minutes, that’s all we need!).

When we were at CFNY last week, ex-Mod, ex-Dead Boy and current kewl lawyer David Quinton and d.j. Bookie were talking up a big Last Pogo 30th bash this December, and we thought, “Hey…wait a minute…if we’re doing a feature film about the punk scene in Toronto circa 1976 – 1978…and it’s built around The Last Pogo concert…I got an idea! Maybe we should shoot this big party”. Like, duh!

And hey, dear reader, if you’ve got any cool stuff from that era we could film, or if you’ve got a story or gossip or rumours or whatever, drop us a line, and we’ll try and catch up to ya.

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