A B O U T   T H E   F I L M

"The early ‘80s Detroit hardcore scene, which played out at the Freezer, was the true epicentre of total punk
in the USA. With a bunch of creative, alien kids in working-class Michigan finding one another and unleashing a catalog of totally amazing tunes, it was the blueprint for radical punk that’s still going strong today.
Dope, Hookers and Pavement lets everyone who made the scene state their case and connect the dots. This is anti-fascist, anti-authority collective energy as real as a stick of dynamite."

Thurston Moore, Sonic Youth

"In 1981, our reaction to the punk rumblings around the globe would be encapsulated in a wondrous little stinkbox called the Freezer. Though it was in the D proper, that pirated and skeevy shithole really belonged to a tribe of kids from all over the Midwest bent on fun, not fisticuffs. Dope, Hookers and Pavement does the impossible and captures the true essence of a time. I saw it from all angles -- as writer, performer and fan -- and I’d like to think we wrote another chapter in the glorious history of Detroit rock'n'roll. Fuck, I know we did!"

Tesco Vee, The Meatmen, Touch and Go

“In the mid-1980s, I was fortunate enough to catch the latter-half of the storied Detroit hardcore scene. That’s where I met Otto, the filmmaker. Our bands sometimes played together. He always had his shit together.
It was an intense but fleeting moment in the history of Detroit punk and he is the man to tell that story.”

Brendan Benson, The Raconteurs

"Dope, Hookers and Pavement is a deliciously rowdy and rockin' doc that'll leave you riveted, slack-jawed and laughing... and teach you everything you ever needed to know about the early Detroit hardcore scene."

Mark J. Norton, The Ramrods (Detroit)

"After writing Why Be Something That You’re Not, I figured I knew everything I needed to know about the early Detroit hardcore scene. I was wrong. Dope, Hookers and Pavement brings it all back to life through the words of all those involved with this lost chapter of the American underground that is still relevant today."

Tony Rettman, author (Why Be Something That You’re Not, NY Hardcore 1980–90, Straight Edge)

"This isn't just a film about Detroit hardcore, it's a film about the power that comes from youthful frustration, self-discovery and hope. Dope, Hookers and Pavement is funny, touching, honest and a well-written reminder of the value of music and community. Loved it!"

Scott Crawford, filmmaker (CREEM: America's Only Rock 'N' Roll Magazine, Salad Days)

April 25-26, 2020, Detroit ( POSTPONED

May 26, Philadelphia POSTPONED
May 28-29, Brooklyn POSTPONED
June: Toronto, Chicago, Grand Rapids, Cleveland, Pittsburgh POSTPONED
July: San Francisco, Los Angeles POSTPONED

COMING SOON... "3958 Cass" double-7" soundtrack from Third Man Records / Touch and Go Records


Dope, Hookers and Pavement is a lively and unfiltered account of the early days of the Detroit hardcore punk scene, circa 1981-82, in the notorious Cass Corridor, arguably one of the worst neighbourhoods in the city at the time. It took a small, seriously committed throng of white, suburban teens and skater kids to get down there and make that scene happen -- but not without first doing a few one-off gigs in Detroit's gay bars and a critical stint at the Coronation Tavern in Windsor, Ontario before converging on the Corridor for their now-mythical residency at the ramshackle Freezer Theatre.

Featuring over 70 in-depth interviews -- including John Brannon (Negative Approach), Tesco Vee (Meatmen, Touch and Go), Ian MacKaye (Minor Threat, Dischord Records), pro skater Bill Danforth, scene kids, and members of the Necros, The Fix, Violent Apathy and Bored Youth -- and never-before-seen Super8 footage of the Freezer, Dope, Hookers and Pavement is both hilarious and reflective, and an overdue record of a nearly invisible but magic little moment in the long history of Detroit rock'n'roll.

Produced and directed by Otto Buj
Presented by El Studio444

Running time: 113 minutes

© 2020 ottomülefilmproduktion

Photo: Davo