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The 20 Best Music Movies Ever

  • 19. Glastonbury (2006). From the opening mud squelches onwards this documentary does what all great docs do – makes you wish you were right there in the thick of it. [View the full list]

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  • 18. Garden State (2004). Coldplay’s ‘Don’t Panic’, ‘New Slang’ and ‘Caring Is Creepy’ by The Shins and Simon & Garfunkel’s ‘The Only Living Boy In New York’ all accompany the film. [View the full list]

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  • 17. Meeting People Is Easy (1998). It’s an anti-tour film, exposing the tedium rather than the glamour of being on-the-road. [View the full list]

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    Added: 01 Apr 2010

  • 16. Gimme Shelter (1970). Borrowing its title from one of the greatest tunes of all time, this is one of the essential music documentaries. [View the full list]

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  • 15. No Direction Home (2005). You don’t have to be a rabid Dylanologist to enjoy Martin Scorsese’s high-minded documentary about Bob Dylan’s career between 1961 and 1966. [View the full list]

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  • 14. Pulp Fiction (1994). The film that sees violence, comedy, crime and pop culture collide. [View the full list]

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  • 13. Dazed And Confused (1993). Richard Linklater’s love-note to his mid-70s schooldays pulls of the neat trick of making you nostalgic for a time you (probably) never even lived through. [View the full list]

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  • 12. Stop Making Sense (1984). The highest-ranking concert movie in our list, Stop Making Sense was shot over the course of three nights at Hollywood's Pantages Theater, during Talking Heads' 1983 ‘Speaking In Tongues’ tour. [View the full list]

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  • 11. Dig! (2004). Tracks the Brian Jonestown Massacre’s Anton Newcombe and Courtney Taylor of the Dandy Warhols over seven years. [View the full list]

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  • 10. High Fidelity (2000). This is a film that speaks to anyone who’s ever obsessed over music to the detriment of human relationships. [View the full list]

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  • 9. This Is Spinal Tap (1984). The sharpness of the performances – especially Christopher Guest’s dim-but-lovable Nigel Tufnel – is even more impressive when you consider that much of the dialogue was improvised. [View the full list]

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  • 8. Don't Look Back (1967). More than a tour documentary, this film finds Dylan inventing the modern idea of the mercurial rock star. [View the full list]

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  • 7. Quadrophenia (1979). Bursting with violence, drugs, sexual longing and despair, Quadrophenia - loosely based on The Who's 1973 rock opera - is often dismissed as a mod film, but its appeal is universal. [View the full list]

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  • 6. Trainspotting (1996). Released in 1996, the height of Britpop, Danny Boyle’s breathtakingly distinctive film caught a unique moment in British culture: youthful, confident, alive with possibility. [View the full list]

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  • 5. Some Kind Of Monster (2004). A startling, wince-inducing insight into Metallica's ego-driven petty rivalries. [View the full list]

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  • 4. Almost Famous (2000). Evokes an almost impossibly glamorous moment in time. [View the full list]

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  • 3. Control (2007). Stunningly shot in black and white, the modern classic focusses on Joy Division and the band's enigmatic frontman Ian Curtis, who commited suicide aged just 23. [View the full list]

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  • 2. Anvil (2008). You don’t need to be a gumby old-school metal fan to appreciate the desperate poignancy of this award-winning documentary. [View the full list]

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  • 1. 24 Hour Party People (2002). As celebratory as it is comical, 24 Hour Party People bows at the altar of Manchester’s legendary, pioneering indie scene – while never being afraid to add a mischievous dash of the surreal to liven up proceedings. [View the full list]

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