Trainwreck: Woodstock '99 is now streaming on Netflix – and many viewers are shocked and outraged at not only the festival-gone-horribly wrong, but the way the docuseries itself handled some of Woodstock '99's most gruesome aspects.
The New York state festival was intended to be the third in a series of peaceful music festivals that first began in 1969. Instead, corruption, greed, and mob mentality overtook the event and resulted in multiple fires, riots, destruction of property, physical violence, consumption of septic water, and multiple sexual assaults.
The docuseries, directed by The Hunting of Ted Bundy helmer Jamie Crawford, contains previously unseen footage and multiple interviews with attendees as well as Woodstock '99 festival promoters Michael Lang and John Scher. Many viewers weighed in on the docuseries, upset at both the events that took place and the choices that the series itself makes.
Gas tank explosions, $12 bottles of water, multiple rapes, people washing in mud that was actually shit (and drinking water that was also contaminated with shit)... the new Netflix doc Trainwreck: Woodstock 99 really is a lot to unpack pic.twitter.com/y6dIM7l4gqAugust 3, 2022
"This Woodstock '99 documentary is a vision of hell," said writer Ronan Fitzgerald.
"The Netflix docu-series Trainwreck: Woodstock '99 is a testament of the fact that with every year that goes by, human morals and values deteriorate drastically," one user said (opens in new tab).
"That new Woodstock 99’ Netflix documentary is fucking wild & also disturbing… because WTF," said (opens in new tab)a viewer.
"Highly recommend. A lot of psychological insights, herd mentality, generational disconnect, teenage angst, music influence, old white dudes not taking responsibility. Very interesting documentary. Watch it," commented another.
"The Woodstock '99 doc needs a 4th episode dedicated exclusively to the festival's public health failures & outcomes: poop water & mud, trench mouth, lack of sanitation, emergency/disaster medicine, sexual violence & health, herd mentality, large-scale trauma/PTSD, etc.," said (opens in new tab) Rolling Stone editor Elizabeth Yoko.
"Bags were searched as people entered. Security took food and water but left marijuana, ecstasy, mushrooms, etc???" someone responded (opens in new tab) in disbelief to Yoko's tweet.
I highly recommend anyone with the time watch Trainwreck: Woodstock ‘99 on Netflix. That ill-fated festival exposed so much about corporate greed, toxic frat culture, generational disconnects. Just—fuck. Take the time and learn about it. Also, fuck John Scher🤙🏻August 3, 2022
Here is a perfect example of how older adults create their own problems and then look around like "how did this happen?" A young kid tried to warn them that you're playing with fire (literally) and no one listened. #Woodstock99 #trainwreck @netflix pic.twitter.com/2xm9WkKSuyAugust 3, 2022
Many viewers were disappointed in the way the docuseries handled the numerous sexual assaults that took place at Woodstock '99, as the doc only spends a brief moment on it in a singular episode – and shows unblurred footage of an assault.
"How horrifying to have been assaulted at a music festival and then have it caught on film that’s then used in a Netflix doc," one Twitter user expressed (opens in new tab).
"Probably the worst thing about the Netflix Woodstock 99 documentary is that it tacks on the rapes as an afterthought instead of portraying it as *part* of the festival. The idea that it's some small thing that happened mostly in secret at the end of the fest is absurd," said (opens in new tab) a viewer.
"Since everyone’s going on about that Woodstock ‘99 documentary, let me give you the warning I wish I’d had that this programme (barely) deals with sexual assault. After reading the reports it actually gives in my opinion an unforgivable lack of weight and focus to them," commented (opens in new tab) comedian Grace Petrie.
"There’s a moment in Netflix’s documentary about Woodstock ’99 where one of the festival’s producers reasons that, with over 220k people, the number of rapes was lower than in a similar-sized town," one user said.
Watched the @netflix documentary on #Woodstock99 and dear god, the amount of victim blaming and turning a blind eye to the abuse and assault of women made me so angry. Fantastic documentary about a festival that could have been so amazing, but greed ruined it, like most things.August 3, 2022
Watched the #TrainwreckWoodstock99 documentary on Netflix and maybe it's just me but I can't help but think the numerous corroborated reports of sexual assault and rape deserve more than four minutes of dismissive discussion at the end of Part III.#Woodstock99August 3, 2022
Trainwreck: Woodstock '99 is three episodes long, all of which are now streaming on Netflix. For more, check out our list of the best Netflix documentaries to stream right now.