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May 28, 2012

Movie/Music Review: Fix: The Ministry Movie (2011, Gigantic Pictures)

Directed by Doug Freel

Starring Al Jourgensen, Paul Barker and Trent Reznor

Rising from obscurity in the 90‘s, a band with a unique sound emerged to inspire an entirely new genre in the rock/metal scene. The genre is known as Industrial and the band was called Ministry. Their music was a mirror reflection of their lifestyle, chaotic and intense.

What this documentary captures are the lifestyle, musings, fears and hopelessly flawed coping mechanisms of Al Jourgensen, the lead singer for Ministry. Trapped within the confines of rock super-stardom, record contracts and life on the road, his only escape is his drug use.

The many candid interviews and raw footage shot before, during and after their shows paint an ultimately dark picture of a tortured and disintegrating soul. There’s no denying that Al Jourgensen is a fascinating and charismatic figure. He often comes across as a thoughtful, intuitive and sensitive human being, while other times we the audience are allowed to sit ring-side as Al slips away into the blackness and his inner demons take center stage. It was a really tough thing to watch at times, on a whole other level far and above the manufactured “reality shows” we are accustomed to seeing. Your fantasies of the “Wine, Women & Song” lifestyle of the modern rock star will be shattered once you have seen this film. No secrets are left out, and I mean none. From tales of Jourgensen’s pre-music career lifestyle, giving blowjobs on the street for beer money, to the shocking on-screen drug use. It appears the only time Jourgensen doesn't have a syringe in his hand is when he’s on stage....and even then you wonder.

Another fascinating aspect of this film is the dynamic between the band members as they all attempt to cope with their unique lifestyle in their own ways while simultaneously dealing with Jourgensen's utter insanity. Much of the film is spent covering a time-frame in which Jourgensen is fighting intense bouts of paranoia, fearing he is going to be assassinated on stage. In one scene his manager is showing him two different bullet-proof vests he can wear while performing and Jourgensen's only response is, “Jesus Christ! They can put a man on the moon but they cant make a bullet-proof vest with a pocket for your fucking smokes!”

Interwoven in this tapestry of madness are interviews with current and former members of Ministry, as well as some of the biggest names in the modern rock/metal scene including Trent Reznor, Paul Barker, Lemmy Kilminster, Dave Navarro, Buzz Osborne, David Yow and Casey Chaos. Each adding their own personal piece to the Jourgensen puzzle as well as their own anecdotes on life at the top of the music heap.

Its shocking, sad and sometimes hilariously funny, but in the end it ultimately left me with a hollow feeling in the pit of my stomach watching this mans unique genius slowly dying with each needle he pushes into his arm.

Jourgensen's final quote in the film goes as follows, “You fucking idiots will believe anything I say.” But the truth of the matter is, nothing he says, no matter how outlandish, can compare to what you will see with your own eyes, watching a man trying to live up to the image of his own death-defying alter-ego. To say this movie is amazing doesn't do it justice. It is absolutely mesmerizing.

Along for the ride on this 2-disc set is an unbelievable CD collection of lesser known but incredible songs by Ministry. Its entitled, Fix This! and it will blow your face off. 11 cuts, and each one is, well.....its Ministry. Nothing but pure power and aggression set to those haunting psychedelic grooves that only Ministry can produce.

Overall, this set is absolute perfection and more then deserving of a perfect score.
10 out of 10 and a must-have for rock/metal fans.


  1. fuck you mother not al jourgense orait? is not true

    1. What exactly is the anger about? It's not true that the movie is good?