Air Guitar Nation 

2005/2007

If a little air guitar goes a long way over the span of a three-minute song, imagine stretched out to feature-film length. Alexandra Lipsitz's documentary follows several intrepid would-be rock stars as they practice their finger-lickin' moves in preparation for the U.S. Air Guitar Championships.

These people "? some of whom admit they have no talent "? take their act far too seriously. We even see some attending a camp where they learn proper techniques and showmanship. But this film is not about the training, but the battle, and no stage fighter is as eccentric as the Asian performer known as "C. Diddy," arguably "Nation"'s centerpiece.

As philosophical as he waxes about air guitar, it pains the viewer to swallow his words, given he performs shirtless, wearing tight pants, a red cape and a Hello Kitty insignia on his chest. He's not unlikable, per se, but seems more in it for his 15 minutes of fame than anything else.

No amount seems spared for the soundtrack, boasting such ax-grinding rock heroes as Queen, Kiss and The Who, but the same cannot be said for everything else. The doc is by no means a loser, but it's far from a winner "? with just a little more juice, it coulda been a contender.

 "?Rod Lott

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