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Rock On: Teen Misfits Go Heavy in Movie ‘Metal Lords’

Rock On: Teen Misfits Go Heavy in Movie ‘Metal Lords’

Wednesday, 6 April, 2022 - 09:30
Jaeden Martell. (AP)

Two misfits try to start a heavy metal band at their high school in new Netflix film "Metal Lords", a coming-of-age comedy part inspired by writer D.B. Weiss' own teenage musical experiences.

"Knives Out" actor Jaeden Martell plays student Kevin, who wants to please his best friend Hunter, a hardcore metal fan determined to win the Battle of the Bands contest with their group.

With Kevin on drums, Hunter on the guitar, their search for a bass player at school, where pop is more popular than metal, proves fruitless until Kevin overhears cellist Emily, played by Isis Hainsworth, practicing.

"Doing this movie definitely gave me a new appreciation for metal," Martell told Reuters.

"When it's a foreign genre to you, it sounds like people smashing cymbals and screaming. But really, there's a lot of's almost like mathematical, it's really special and you have to be very talented to play it."

Actor and jazz guitarist Adrian Greensmith, who plays Hunter, said he watched "School of Rock" as part of his preparation while Hainsworth looked to cellist Tina Guo.

"I have mad respect for metal and people who play metal," Hainsworth said.

As well as focusing on the genre, the movie, released on Friday, also looks at growing pains and mental health.

"In a very oblique way, there are experiences that I had in high school playing music...that you accumulate over the years," said Weiss, co-creator of hit series "Game of Thrones".

"Years ago I started to see how they might shape together into a fun small personal story about three kids who don't fit in learning how to not fit in together. And so that's where it came from and then in the interim, obviously, it changed a lot."

Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello served as executive music producer on the movie, and wrote Hunter's composition "Machinery of Torment". He said he could identify with the story.

"Heavy metal was my first love and the connection and the opportunity it provided to enhance a kind of self-worth when you're a teenager growing up, especially sort of as an outcast in a conservative suburb," he said. "It was my lifeline."

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