Rude Boy. Ray Range and The Clash

Director Jack Hazan, David Mingay
United Kingdom / 133 min. / 1980 / English

The crucial docu-film of 1980. A young guy leaves his job at a sex shop to become a roadie for The Clash, in the days of Give’em enough rope and the On parole tour. Brawls, Nazis, politics, pool tables and reggae, Rock Against Racism, Tories, sex in the loo and a thousand hits: “White Riot” (with Jimmy Pursey), “Stay Free”, “Safe European Home”, “Garageland”... Brutal.


This crucial docu-film from 1980 kinda resembles Jubilee, in the sense that the plot is less important than the aesthetic and the declarations, and of course, the songs. There is a plot: a young outcast leaves his job at a sex shop to become a roadie for The Clash. The guy gets a whiff of a ripe opportunity: The Clash are about to record Give’em enough rope, and are between two major tours: On parole and Sort It Out. There’s context: constant brawls, Nazis and anti-Nazis rioting, right-wing government, Rock Against Racism, lots of police and not a lotta fun. There’s also plenty of daily life  (fictionalized but genuine) of a young working class English guy in 1978-79: pool tables and reggae, sex in the loo, fines for being drunken and disorderly, and alteration of the public order, political indecision and loads of questions (generally directed at Joe Strummer, comfortable here in his role venerable, veteran punk). But The Clash steal the limelight. This film is theirs. The fragments of fiction serve as intermediaries to flesh it out. And they play them all… “White riot” (with Jimmy Pursey of Sham 69), a heart-wrenching  “Stay free” in the studio, “Safe European Home”, “Garageland”, “London’s burning”, “Janie Jones”... A rare privilege.

The Clash: Rude Boy (Trailer)

Part fiction, part rockumentary, Rude Boy tells the story of a roadie working for the only band that matters: The Clash. Recorded during the band's early rise in 1978-1979, Rude Boy features the most frenetic live footage of The Clash ever recorded.


Showing format

The Clash

Peter Goddard, David Mingay

Jack Hazan

Jack Hazan, David Mingay

Film company

Film distributor

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