624. Quadrophenia

Okay, I’m totally cheating here. The illustration below is something I created last year, for my own amusement. And while it was definitely inspired by the mod and rocker rivalry captured in QUADROPHENIA, it’s not specific to that film. But no matter—I’ve been eager to post it ever since Criterion announced they were releasing this title. QUADROPHENIA is The Who’s lesser known rock opera-to-film adaptation, although the movie itself isn’t a musical, but a character study with a great soundtrack. It centers around a teenager named Jimmy who defines himself by the clothes, scooters, music, and other trappings of being a mod. He’s eager to impress his friends, pick up girls, and beat up a few rockers in the process. But when real life doesn’t conform to his idealistic worldview, and his chosen subculture lets him down, he starts to fall apart. It’s a fun time-capsule of a film that seems to be both nostalgic and bitter about growing up in 1960s London. I really enjoyed the youthful energy and rising tension, not to mention The Who’s earnest rock weaving through the narrative. And really, you can’t go wrong with a young Sting playing the king of the mods.

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