“Is this the real life, is this just fantasy.” That is Queen’s famous opening line in the song ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’. As it turned out, Queen’s biopic was mostly just fantasy but Mötley Crüe’s ‘The Dirt’ gets in mostly right.
‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ was a lot of lies. Queen had not broken up before Live Aid, Freddie wasn’t diagnosed with AIDS until two years after Live Aid, ‘We Will Rock You’ wasn’t written in 1980, and ‘Fat Bottomed Girls’, seen in the movie being performed in 1974, wasn’t written until 1978 (and was on actually the same album as We Will Rock You). That’s just some of the Queen stuff-ups. Go here for the complete list.
While the Queen movie goes out of its way to Disney-up Freddie, the Crüe movie is pure filth.
Mötley Crüe’s ‘The Dirt’ is based on the 2001 best-seller written by the band with Neil Strauss. Don’t take ‘The Dirt’ as gospel either. Strauss has since confirmed Nikki Sixx was mostly off his tits at the time when he was doing the research interviews and some of what Sixx said was just made up.
The Dirt’s inaccuracies are more in what it doesn’t tell as opposed to what it does tell incorrectly. To keep the storyline to a timeline the entire Elektra Records multinational operation is condensed into one character Tom Zutant (who is a real person as opposed to Queen’s record exec Ray Foster who was completely made up).
Doc McGhee and Doug Thaler co-managed the band although Thaler is cut out to simplify the story. They point that out in the movie with Doug appearing (then disappearing for a brief moment).
After Vince left Mötley Crüe recorded one album ‘Mötley Crüe’ with the band in 1994. It stiffed and the Corabi era is only briefly mentioned with the Corabi character not even getting a speaking part. (That’ll save them on equity fees. A non-speaking walk-on role earns an extras fee, not an actors fee).
Corabi did better than Pamela Anderson however. Lee’s much publicized second marriage to Lee generated tabloid headlines and a porn tape that reached a lot more fans than the Corabi album. Anderson doesn’t rate a mention in The Dirt although the Heather Locklear/Tommy Lee story gets a prime position as part of the storyline.
As with most biopics and the time restrictions in telling a story come into play. A liner at the end of the movie stating the band went on for another 20 years covers off (well) the next 20 years in one line.
We all knew about the Rock ‘n’ Roll. The scary thing is no-one is questioning the portrayal of the sex and drugs in this movie. How are any of these guys still alive? There is probably a medical documentary to be made on that alone.
What is even more bizarre is that the sex and drugs stories in The Dirt aren’t even the wackiest stories in the biopic. The scene from the debauched Ozzy Osbourne / Mötley Crüe tour of 1984 wins hands down as the most nonsensical story in this movie.
Ozzy appears poolside wearing a dress with money up the crack of his ass, bending over and offering the notes to the hotel’s poolside clientele. He goes over to the Crüe, grabs a straw, gets down on the ground and starts snorting ants. He then pisses on the ground and licks it up. Sixx then pisses on the ground and Ozzy licks that up too. The story has been confirmed by Tommy Lee AND Ozzy Osbourne.
The next biopic we can look forward to is Rocketman, the story of Elton John in May.
The Dirt is now screening on Netflix.