“The film is a time capsule of not only ‘80s metal—the fans, the fashion and, above all, the hair—but also of a defining moment in American car culture.”
Jeff Krulik and John Heyn’s critically-acclaimed documentary Heavy Metal Parking Lot captures the wild exuberance of Judas Priest fans tailgating before a concert in the Capital Centre parking lot in Landover, Maryland on May 31, 1986. In just sixteen minutes of footage, the film immortalizes the hairstyles, vibrant prints, air guitar, beer and cars—not to mention the unbridled enthusiasm for Priest—that characterized U.S. pop metal fandom in its 1980s heyday. Lauded by music fans, journalists, pop culture historians and scholars, Heavy Metal Parking Lot offers both an entertaining and fascinating glimpse of a truly unique subculture.
This exhibit, “Heavy Metal Parking Lot: The 30-year Journey of a Cult Film Sensation,” commemorates the latest milestone anniversary of the film, detailing the circumstances of its creation and describing its unexpected trajectory from tape trading to film festival favorite and ultimately to global phenomenon.
Curators: Laura Schnitker, Jeff Krulik Project Archivists for the Exhibit: Alice Rogers, Alex Pirela Graphic Design: Kelly Andrews
With help from: Laura Cleary, Cindy Zhao, Avery Boddie