Black Sabbath (est. 1968) is done. Retired. Finished. Seriously. They mean it this time. It’s over. I mean, why else would they call this farewell tour The End?
Okay, so maybe it’s not really the end of Sabbath. Although Ozzy says that he’s done with the band, he’s said that before. And why didn’t he make a proper farewell statement at the end of the last show? Tony Iommi doesn’t want to tour anymore for health reasons, but he says he’d consider recording a new album and perhaps the odd on-off gig. Geezer? He’ll go along with whatever Ozzy and Tony say. Bill Ward wasn’t part of this farewell because he was fighting with the other three, but you must think he’s having regrets about Sabbath ending without him. (Ozzy reportedly has some remorse about that, too.) And besides, this sets up the opportunity for a full reunion gig down the road.
Still, we shouldn’t count on that. Ozzy told Rolling Stone “We’re not going to re-form after five years and say, ‘Because of public demand…’ Black Sabbath has been up and down and ‘round the mulberry bush so many times.”
So this really could be The End. And why else would they have made a movie about it?
On September 3, 2015, Sabbath announced their final lap around the planet. Starting in Omaha on January 16, 2016, the tour hit rolled through the Americas, Australia and New Zealand, a succession of European festivals, South America and back to Europe before coming to a triumphant two final hometown shows in Birmingham on February 2 and 4, 2017.
In total, 1.07 million people bought tickets and spent nearly $85 million on the tour’s 74 shows, making it one of the most successful tours of the decade.
The End of The End is a document of that final Birmingham gig in front of 16,000 people at Genting Arena. “To bring it all back home after all these years was pretty special,” said the band. “It was so hard to say goodbye to the fans, who’ve been incredibly loyal to us through the years. We never dreamed in the early days that we’d be here 49 years later doing our last show on our home turf.”
The film will be shown at over 1,500 cinemas on a one-night-only basis September 28th. Directed by Dick Carruthers (he was Led Zeppelin’s reunion show movie, Celebration Day), it features all sorts of behind-the-scenes material, personal stories from the band and crew and footage of the band in the studio performing material that no one’s heard for over 40 years.
When the lights go up after one more rendition of “Paranoid,” you may never see the likes of Sabbath again.
Watch the trailer below and learn more showtimes at Cineplex.