First Hit: Riveting documentary about a music man who followed his own path and beliefs.
At the beginning of the film, Frank makes a statement that went something like this: There are so many people who only know me from my first few records and concerts. The fact is they don’t know me or my music at all. I’m one of those people who are in this category although I have never claimed I knew much about him.
I saw Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention at two locations in 1967, the Anaheim Convention Center and the LA Sports Arena. I was both shocked and engaged by the music and the show that was part of his performance.
It was the original rock performance art and show. It was truly a unique show. Although, I'd occasionally check in by buying an album or listening to a track from a record, but to his point I never saw him perform again and he was never a "must listen". However, I knew that he was a genius and this film confirms it.
The movie consists of interviews and clips of Frank and his band. Chronologically this film shows how Frank walked his own path and never compromised on what he wanted to develop and deliver.
There is one point in the film we see him sitting and listening to an English philharmonic orchestra and conductor he hired to play one of his classical compositions. An interviewer asks him if this is the best use of this high level orchestra? He responds by saying, I saved my money, I’m the one that is paying for all this because I want to hear what I wrote. No one else has any money invested in this except me. Therefore it is my right to have this orchestra play what I want them to play because I'm paying for it.
With this statement, I began to better understand his path and his love for music as he defined it. He loved creating music and because he worked at it 16 hours a day, he had a right to hear it in any way he wanted. It was his life.
Zappa was his enigmatic intelligent self. Thorsten Schutte did a brilliant job of stringing together previous interviews, film clips, and music segments.
Overall: This was a wonderful film about a brilliant man.