Not Fade Away (film)

Not Fade Away is a 2012 drama film and the directorial debut of The Sopranos creator David Chase. It was released on December 21, 2012.[2]

Not Fade Away
Theatrical release poster
Directed byDavid Chase
Produced byMark Johnson
David Chase
Written byDavid Chase
CinematographyEigil Bryld
Edited bySidney Wolinsky
Indian Paintbrush
The Weinstein Company
Gran Via Productions
Chase Films
Distributed byParamount Vantage
Release date
  • October 6, 2012 (2012-10-06) (New York Film Festival)
  • December 21, 2012 (2012-12-21) (United States)
CountryUnited States
Budget$20 million[1]
Box office$610,792[1]


In 1960s suburban New Jersey, a group of friends form a rock band and try to make it big.

In his late teens, Douglas Damiano lives with: his father Pat, who suffers from psoriasis and is physically rough with Douglas; his mother Antoinette, who frequently grows hysterical and threatens suicide; and his sister Evelyn, the film's narrator. Douglas sees his friend Eugene Gaunt singing and playing lead guitar for a band in high school, and resolves to join the band to earn the affections of a Grace Dietz. Douglas gets his chance when the band's drummer, Schindewulf, is drafted to go to Vietnam.

In the wake of the "British Invasion", Gene is trying to remodel his band after The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, and he believes Douglas is suited to this style.

The band's membership fluctuates. With an awkward bass player losing his position, the core of the band is Douglas, Gene, and their friend Wells. Gene is the lead singer and guitarist, Wells plays rhythm guitar, and Douglas plays drums and sings backup vocals.

At a party Gene accidentally swallows a joint while trying to smoke it through a toilet paper roll, and is unable to sing. Douglas takes over on lead vocals, and the band's members later agree that he is superior to Gene.

Gene feels threatened by Douglas and tries to keep the spotlight on himself. During one concert he juggles firecrackers in protest of the war, but fumbles and burns his scalp, humiliating himself and the band. Douglas goes to Gene's house to formally kick him out of the band, and they end up fighting until Gene's father restrains his son.

Douglas gets involved with Grace after a couple of heart-to-heart conversations, but their relationship suffers when Wells reveals that Grace used to blow him (and others) regularly. Douglas and Grace have an argument in which she wrongly accuses him of sleeping with her sister Joy. Joy, an eccentric deeply invested in the counter-culture movement, develops increasing friction with her father, who ultimately has her committed to a mental hospital. After this, Douglas and a grief-stricken Grace get back together.

Douglas initially tells his father that he intends to join the army and get an ROTC scholarship, but abandons these plans after the Vietnam War begins. He drops out of college to pursue his musical career full-time, which drives a rift between himself and Pat. Pat learns that his psoriasis is actually mycosis fungoides cancer, and he begins to mellow somewhat, sharing a dinner with his son and revealing a personal secret that involves Douglas' mother.

Meanwhile, two years after the band's inception, Douglas and Wells get the opportunity to audition for Jerry Ragovoy. They recruit Gene back into the band for the audition, although Gene tells them he wants a "featured" credit on their performance of an original song, "The St. Valentine's Day Massacre". Ragovoy sees potential in the band, but outlines a rigorous work schedule, described as "rock and roll boot camp", before he's ready to sign them to a contract. He states that great music is "ten percent inspiration and ninety percent perspiration," a sentiment earlier expressed to Douglas by his father. The band members are disillusioned with this prospect, Douglas in particular.

While test-driving Gene's motorcycle, Wells swerves into a tree, breaking multiple limbs. This postpones their potential record deal for another year. Douglas, who is losing interest in the rock and roll lifestyle, decides to go to film school, which takes him and Grace to California. While at a party in Los Angeles, Douglas sees Charlie Watts leaving the house and hears a rumor that Mick Jagger is in the bathroom with several women, although nobody at the party actually sees Jagger.

Douglas tries to hitchhike home and is invited into the car of a strange woman wearing frightening face paint, who comments that he looks lonesome. Unsettled, Douglas refuses the ride and walks home after briefly windowshopping at a music store. Looking around the downtown scene, he looks to the sky and witnesses again the illuminated clouds that so inspired him before. Smiling, Douglas walks down the street and off camera. His sister Evelyn enters the scene and addresses the camera directly, commenting that she is writing an essay about America's two biggest innovations: nuclear weapons and rock 'n roll. She speculates as to which one will win in the end, then dances to The Modern Lovers' song "Roadrunner", performed by The Sex Pistols, in the middle of the street.



Rotten Tomatoes, a review aggregator, reports that 70% of 86 surveyed critics gave the film a positive review; the average rating is 6.6/10. The site's consensus reads: "Exuberant and bittersweet, Not Fade Away is a coming-of-age story set to a British Invasion beat that occasionally meanders but mostly charms."[3] On IMDb the film has a rating of 6.0/10.[4]

Soundtrack listing

1."There Was a Time"James Brown3:36
2."Tell Me"The Rolling Stones3:49
3."Ride On Baby"The Twylight Zones2:52
4."Bo Diddley"Bo Diddley2:46
5."Bo Diddley"The Twylight Zones2:48
6."Subterranean Homesick Blues"The Twylight Zones3:56
7."Parachute Woman"The Rolling Stones2:20
8."Go Now"The Moody Blues3:13
9."Time Is On My Side"The Twylight Zones3:24
10."Dust My Broom"Elmore James2:57
11."I Ain't Gonna Eat Out My Heart"The Rascals2:43
12."Good Morning Blues"Lead Belly2:56
13."Train Kept A Rollin'"Johnny Burnette & The Rock N' Roll Trio2:16
14."Train Kept A Rollin'"The Twylight Zones2:15
15."Pretty Ballerina"The Left Banke2:38
16."Down So Low"Mother Earth3:52
17."Itchycoo Park"Small Faces2:49
18."Me and the Devil Blues"Robert Johnson2:33
19."The St. Valentine's Day Massacre"The Twylight Zones3:49
20."T.B. Sheets"Van Morrison9:47
21."Some Velvet Morning"Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood3:43
22."Bali Ha'i"Original Motion Picture Cast Of South Pacific3:41
23."Road Runner"The Modern Lovers3:43
24."Pipeline"The Twylight Zones2:37
25."She Belongs to Me"Bob Dylan2:49
26."Surgical Supply Jingle"Margaret Dorn0:40



  1. "Not Fade Away".
  2. "Not Fade Away Trailer, News, Videos, and Reviews". 2012-12-21. Retrieved 2013-06-20.
  3. Not Fade Away, retrieved 2016-11-12
  4. Chase, David (2013-07-19), Not Fade Away, retrieved 2016-11-12
  5. Official website
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