A Replacements film was inevitable: It's only surprising that it took two decades to emerge. One of the most salient characteristics of the Fab Four from Minneapolis (that would be Tommy, Bob, Chris and Paul, left to right in the photo above) is the fervor of their fans. Sure, the band was brilliant on many days, good on a few and career-endingly awful on many, many others. But beyond the mix of unfashionable 1970s influences intertwined with more sophisticated tastes picked up later, these four working-class teenage delinquents and dropouts—without a high school diploma between them—simply needed to be in a band. The problem of authenticity and urgency that plagues too many art school combos was never an issue for the lads that began as Dogbreath, then the Impediments before emerging as the Replacements in time for their first (completed) gig, at a local halfway house.
Gorman Bechard's documentary Color Me Obsessed is an engaging, tightly edited, talking-head film in which fans, musicians and friends remember the only band that mattered. Big names are here, David Carr, Robert Christgau and Steve Albini among them, along with North Carolina musician-fans Matt Gentling and Mac McCaughan. But the most moving testimony comes from the fans who recall the band as long-distance companions through lonely times in adolescence and beyond. It screens at Nightlight, beginning at 8:30 p.m. Bechard, who is in town at work on an Archers of Loaf documentary, will be on hand to answer questions. —David Fellerath