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Died Young, Stayed Pretty

  Unrated Closed Captioning

Eileen Yaghoobian

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About the Movie

Died Young, Stayed Pretty is a candid look at the strikingly obscene, brazenly blasphemous and often quite beautiful world of the underground network of music gig poster artists. Eileen Yaghoobian journeys through North America to reveal a new breed of subculturists who've set out to destroy the mainstream through their controversial and intensely visceral design work promoting Radiohead, Nick Cave, White Stripes, Black Keys, Arcade Fire, Flaming Lips, Sonic Youth, Marilyn Manson, Pearl Jam, Queens of the Stone Age, Bob Dylan, and thousands of others. The film gives us intimate look at some of the giants of this modern subculture. Outside of their own circle, they’re virtually unknown. But within their ranks they make up an army of bareknuckle brawlers. Under the guise of advertising for rock shows, these unheralded masters of the silkscreen and Xerox machine carry on public discourses arguing the aesthetic merits of octopus imagery and hairy 70s porn stars. They’ve created their ownvisual language for describing the spotty underbelly of western civilization and they're not shy about throwing it in the face of polite society while safely treading under the radar. Yaghoobian shows these artists for what they are: the vivisectionists of America’s morbidly obese consumer culture. With a top-notch indie soundtrack by Mark Greenberg, the film was featured as an official selection of the 2009 SXSW Film Festival and Comic-Con International.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 30
  • Fresh: 19
  • Rotten: 11
  • Average Rating: 5.8/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Rotten: Unstructured and free-associative, cutting among interviews and images at breakneck speed to no discernible narrative or thematic purpose, the documentary is mercurial to the point of incoherence. – Nathan Lee, New York Times, Jun 24, 2010

Fresh: Eileen Yaghoobian's documentary presents a lot of good art and entertaining personalities in a package that's diverting on a moment-to-moment basis, but lacks any organizing principal or precise point to make the whole cohere. – Dennis Harvey, Variety, May 31, 2013

Fresh: Yaghoobian's nonlinear editing is as offbeat as the posters, with non sequiturs and strange asides. She lets scenes run a few seconds longer than most directors would -- to good effect. – V.A. Musetto, New York Post, Jul 7, 2010

Fresh: The poster makers... mine the outer limits of violence and misogyny with a garish, pop art palette. – John Monaghan, Detroit Free Press, Jun 24, 2010

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

Died Young Stayed Pretty

This is a fantastic look into the world of promotional concert poster artists. It is so interesting to see their process and the zeigeist that occurs within the genre (ex: use of octopi). Being a collector of rock show posters, it was fascinating to me to get to see the artists behind the work.
I'd recommend this film to educators as well. It is a great way to show art and graphic design students how people just like them make a living and express themselves simultaneously.

Love this movie

If you'd like to make a journey into perhaps the last living underground subculture in the US, this is the film for you. Full of art, character and unexpected revelations.


Poster art is all about the musicians they promote, so getting to see the faces and hear the stories of the wonderfully talented artists behind the posters is a real treat! So grateful to the director for giving us a chance to peer into their lives. Brian Chippendale was a favorite :)

Died Young, Stayed Pretty
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  • $9.99
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Released: 2009

Customer Ratings