20 music documentaries you must watch if you liked A Star is Born

5 of 21

Some Kind of Monster

The world of pop has proved to be just as hectic as any other, but when you think about the wild lives of musicians, it’s definitely rock stars that come to mind. In the 2004 documentary Some Kind of Monster, we get to see behind the scenes of a band that everyone knows, Metallica.

The film was named after the band’s 2003 song from their album St. Anger and shows the band re-examining their existence after the lineup is shaken up. Bassist Jason Newsted quit the band and frontman James Hetfield leaves the group to go into rehab for alcohol abuse. Their management decides to hire a coach to help them better understand each other and both friends and bandmates so they can work better as a group.

Part of the documentary takes place only two days after the September 11 terrorist attacks, when most Americans were still incredibly shaken. The film, and coach Phil Towle, helped the band stop compartmentalizing their issues and attack them head-on instead, which Entertainment Weekly called “one of the most revelatory rock portraits ever made.”

Not everyone was so happy about the film, though. Former guitarist Dave Mustaine appears briefly in the production when Lars Ulrich confronts him about the decisions to fire him early on in the band’s career due to his excessive drinking. Mustaine talks about how he still endures ridicule from Metallica fans, despite starting his own successful group — Megadeth — and the two musicians, Mustaine and Ulrich, end up in a screaming match. Mustaine refused to sign off on his scenes being used in the film, but since he signed a release prior, they used the footage anyway, which the guitarist saw as yet another betrayal.