UPDATE ~ 1:15 p.m., Feb. 5 2009: AFI has just announced that tonight’s screening, as well as all of tomorrow’s shows, are canceled due to snow.
Pardon the hyperbole, but Drive-By Truckers is the only real rock ’n’ roll band left in America. When Mike Cooley and Patterson Hood open their mouths, you know they spent the previous two hours chain-smoking beef-jerky cigarettes and snacking on fistfuls of gravel soaked in Old Crow. Do they Auto-Tune that grit out of their studio recordings? Hell no. This is just one of the secrets I hope will be explained in The Secret to a Happy Ending, director Barr Weissman’s documentary about the Athens, Ga., band, which I haven’t seen but pretty much already know everything about. The documentary will probably present DBT in three different ways: DBT as the obvious heirs to Skynyrd’s “triple-threat” guitar section; DBT as real folk who still hang out in Athens, even though they’re famous; and DBT as manly men who dry themselves with cheetah pelts. If you doubt these truths, take your beef to Cooley and Patterson—they’ll be waiting for you at AFI.
THE FILM SHOWS AT 9:15 P.M. AND MIDNIGHT AT THE AFI SILVER THEATRE AND CULTURAL CENTER, 8633 COLESVILLE road, SILVER SPRING. $6–$10. (301) 495-6720.