Melissa James brings No Fun City to the big screen

Melissa James is putting Vancouver’s no-fun rep on the big screen. The award-winning filmmaker behind the 2007 rockabilly doc Shake, Rattle & Roll has posted an eye-popping four-minute demo reel for her forthcoming film No Fun City at

The movie, codirected by James and Kate Kroll, follows former Sweatshop proprietor Malice Liveit, Rickshaw Theatre owner David Duprey, Music Waste organizer Cameron Reed, and the Cobalt’s wendythirteen as they attempt to perform life support on the city’s underground arts scene. Members of DOA, Skinny Puppy, and the Furies make appearances to discuss Vancouver’s historically antagonistic relationship with its music subculture—all set to the sounds of Ní¼ Sensae, White Lung, Sex Negatives, and Twin Crystals, among others. (The trailer also has a killer Adjective track.)

“I decided to make the film because when I moved here from Montreal in 2007, I had a hard time finding the local music scene,” James told the Straight. “Once I did discover places like the Sweatshop and the Emergency Room, I became interested in the fact that the scene was so underground it was almost impossible to find.” But James is hopeful about the future. “There are people that are trying really hard to improve things, from promoters to venue owners to bands to people in city council like Heather Deal.”