I am of an age where I have been fortunate enough to see Iron Maiden over much of their career. There have been many highlights from meeting the band backstage at Leicester's de Montfort Hall when I was in my teens, via the headlining 'Beast at Reading' Saturday night in August 1982, numerous tours, all the albums, Donington, last summer's awesome Twickenham show through to the one night only showing of Flight 666 in Derby last month.
This, by any stretch of the imagination, is a wonderful film, more than a snapshot, more than a 'fly on the wall' rockumentary, and in my view should be awarded an Oscar for the best factual piece of film making in years. It is that good.
I defy anyone, fan of the band or not, to not be entertained for 2 hours, by not only the band members (Nicko....you are a star!), but also the supporting cast of thousands in the road crew, the management, the fans along the way and so much more. 'Spinal Tap' it most definitely isn't!! There is so much more to this band than 6 rock musicians on stage. This film is an intriguing insight into the logistics, relationships, humour, professionalism, side interests (Nicko golfing / Adrian playing tennis with Pat Cash, for example) and the obvious cameraderie of the band and fans.
The sections of the film dealing with 'Ed Force One' and Bruce in particular, are extremely interesting. While it is common knowledge that one of Bruce's alter egos is that of professional airline pilot, it is nevertheless somehow warming, somehow very 'British' for him to take on the dual roles so brilliantly.
It is not often I leave a cinema enthused by what I watched, but 21st April was one such night.
I am eagerly awaiting the delivery of the CD and DVD right now. Roll on 25th May!
Buy one. And another for your mum....she'll love it!
PS - the book 'Bruce Dickinson - Flashing Metal with Iron Maiden and Flying Solo' by Joe Shooman is a great read too!