Film Reviews

Scorpions

Forever And A Day (Cleopatra)

scorpionsThe German heavy metal band have been in action for over 50 years, made a decision in recent years to begin a farewell world tour that lasted three years. Scorpions – Forever and a Day, an authorized documentary from director Katja Von Garnier, gives a wonderful history of the band while also documenting their farewell tour, a tour that caused the Scorpions to rethink their retirement, and ultimately decide to continue on despite all the cons.

The documentary tells the 50-year story of the Scorpions with rare footage and old photos, along with interviews with past and present band members, crew and others, all interspersed with live concert clips, some rare and never before seen.

Guitarist Rudolf Schenker formed Scorpions in Hanover, Germany in 1965, and it’s been his project ever since. The Scorpions’ sound began as blues-based hard rock, before morphing into heavy metal in the early 80s, a sound which took the group right to the top of the charts with their break-out hit “Rock You Like a Hurricane.”

A touching part of their story shown here is how a young Klaus Meine and Rudolf Schenker met and realized instantly that they had the same vision, one that has kept them together for over 50 years as brothers. The 100-minute film is presented in German with English subtitles. Unfortunately, sometimes the subtitles fly too quickly while you’re trying to catch the rare footage and photos presented. And it’s highly distracting when white subtitles appear against a light background. But don’t be sad, some of the footage is in English, as is newer material with native English-speakers.

There’s really something for every Scorpions fan– highlights from the super popular years as well as older material including their humble beginnings, humorous anecdotes, like the time they tried playing their Lonesome Crow material to an upper-class tennis club who wanted to hear old-time standards, as well as farewell concert snippets and behind-the-scenes looks. The final tour line-up consists of original members Klaus Meine and Rudolf Schenker together with long-time lead guitarist Matthias Jabs — a phenomenon in his own right — along with Kentucky-born drummer, James Kottak, who’s now been in the band over 20 years, and Polish bassist Pawel Mąciwoda, who joined in 2003.

Scorpions- Forever and a Day is a very nice retrospective on a very successful metal band. Internationally, they have certainly been one of the tops, and you’ll come away feeling drawn a little bit closer to the band.

-Laura Sedor

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