Filmmaker Victory Tischler-Blue used to go by the stage name Vicki Blue, and she spent part of her teenage years as the bassist with the Runaways, so she was in a better than average position to make a documentary about the rise and fall of the legendary "jail bait" hard rock band. However, not everyone seems to be happy about that notion, and at this writing Tischler-Blue's movie Edgeplay: A Film About the Runaways is in legal limbo, with Joan Jett refusing to grant the producers the rights to use the songs she wrote during her days in the band, and Jett, vocalist Cherie Currie and drummer Sandy West at loggerheads with Tischler-Blue over the film. Guitarist Lita Ford, however, has been an enthusiastic supporter of the project, and Tischler-Blue's lawyer is none other than Jacqueline Fuchs, aka Jackie Fox, another former Runaways bassist. Given all this, it's hard to say how you release a soundtrack album for a movie that may never be released, especially one that contains a number of Runaways songs that apparently aren't available to the filmmakers, but that hasn't stopped the folks at Hip-O from releasing this disc, cautiously credited as Edgeplay: A Film About the Runaways. Along with eight vintage Runaways tunes, this disc includes three solo cuts from Lita Ford, and three songs from Suzi Quatro, another female hard rocker of the 1970s, and while neither is entirely out of place here, their music doesn't fit especially well with the minimalist raunch the Runaways could conjure up at will. In fact, a spin of this disc not only confirms just how far ahead of their time the Runaways were with their raw but realistic tales of life in the teenage nation and no-frills, riff-centric rock, but just how good their stuff has held up -- would that the Donnas could write a tune as great as "Hollywood," or as ambitious as "Dead End Justice." The Runaways were a damn good rock band who deserved better than they got in terms of critical acclaim, public recognition, and a fair shake from the music business, and sixty percent of this album demonstrates why; hopefully, the film confirms the same message and will see the light of day, because their story is one that deserves to be told.
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AllMusic Review by Mark Deming