25 Greatest Punk Rock Movies of All Time

From U.K.-to-L.A. scene rockumentaries to riot-grrl portraits and the Ramones' fictional alma mater, our favorite portrayals of punk on screen

Load Previous

17. '1991: The Year That Punk Broke' (1992)

Poised on the cusp of the alternative rock era, David Markey's documentary follows Sonic Youth on a European festival tour, with guest appearances by Dinosaur Jr., Babes in Toyland, the Ramones and Iggy Pop. But by the time the movie was released, the focus had shifted to their opening band: an up-and-coming Seattle trio called Nirvana. As the title, punning on music-industry slang, suggests, alt-rock's breakthrough was also the beginning of its breakdown: A running gag has band members re-enacting scenes from Madonna's Truth or Dare, mocking pop celebrity even as they come to terms with their own. Ending a week before the release of "Smells Like Teen Spirit," it's a perfect time capsule of the calm before the storm. SA

Back to Top