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The Monkees - Head

4.3 out of 5 stars 253 customer reviews

Additional DVD options Edition Discs
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(Jul 21, 1998)
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$11.59 $9.98
(Jan 01, 1968)
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Editorial Reviews

Peter Tork, Davy Jones, Michael Nesmith and Micky Dolenz have a psychedelic free-for-all. Directed by Bob Rafelson.

Special Features

  • Cameo access
  • Music access

Product Details

  • Actors: Micky Dolenz, Annette Funicello, Davy Jones, Michael Nesmith, Peter Tork
  • Directors: Bob Rafelson
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Full Screen, HiFi Sound, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 1.0)
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    General Audience
  • Studio: Rhino Theatrical
  • DVD Release Date: July 21, 1998
  • Run Time: 86 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (253 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6305038694
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,081 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Monkees - Head" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Robert I. Hedges HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on March 19, 2004
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
When this film was made the career of the Monkees was already in decline as their show had been cancelled and their music was no longer charting ('Porpoise Song' from the "Head" soundtrack got up to number 62 on Billboard). The group was tired of their squeaky clean image as the 'Pre-Fab Four', and they just wanted out. This film was conceived in an effort to reach out to more adult audiences, and to hasten their departure from the scenes as the prototype MTV 'boy band'.
The film itself is a quirky, stream of consciousness movie that treads the line between anti-war statement film to over the top comedy in scenes where, for instance, they have to frolic on the scalp of Victor Mature (in a sequence known as 'dandruff') and are subsequently sucked into a giant vacuum cleaner by Victor Mature's hairdresser. There is no plot as such, but there is some redeeming social commentary such as when Frank Zappa tells Davy that he needs to work on his music more (but compliments his dancing, done with Toni Basil). At the end of the scene Frank Zappa's cow offers her opinion of the Monkees, in a scene that must be my favorite of the movie.
Some of the music is great, with the Nesmith tune 'Circle Sky' getting top mention. It's a great song, filmed live in a scene designed to show how the boys had been devoured by their public image. Other musical numbers are a bit lacking, particularly 'Daddy's Song' and 'As We Go Along.'
Highlights in the film are in the cameos. Not only do Toni Basil and Frank Zappa put in appearances, so do boxer Sonny Liston (who fights Davy), Terry Garr (who pleads to have poison sucked from her finger), Annette Funicello (who pleads tearfully with Davy in a love interest scene), and Jack Nicholson and Dennis Hopper in a cantina scene.
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Format: DVD
Like all cult movies, "Head" contains unusual, unorthodox - even beautiful - moments interspersed with material that simply does not work. With "Head," the Monkees - the most maligned pop rock group of the 1960s - created some of the very best and biting sequences that have ever appeared in a rock movie. It's not as consistently brilliant as "A Hard Day's Night," "Almost Famous," or "This is Spinal Tap," but it's one of the very best rock films ever made.

Virtually everyone knows that the Monkees were American TV's attempt to harness some of the Beatles' electricity. Unfortunately for the Monkees, their TV debut almost perfectly coincided with "serious" rock criticism, which brutally mocked them as prefabricated, defamed them as hoaxes, and ridiculed their brand of Beach Boys-meet-British Invasion sound. Persecuted beyond belief, the Monkees were denied anything resembling hip status and their resentment of this treatment influenced the insights the band (along with Jack Nicholson) contributed to the screenplay.

In one memorable sequence, the Monkees are mobbed onstage after performing a song. They're ripped to pieces by their adoring fans, revealing they aren't human at all but merely robotic mannequins. In another, they change the lyrics to their TV theme song to admit they are nothing but soulless fakes. And, in sequences framing the beginning and end of the film, we have simulated suicides. All of this is accompanied by some of the most accomplished psychedelic pop any mainstream rock band recorded in the hippie era. (It's very fitting that "The Porpoise Song," which plays over the credits here, was resurrected in the similarly disturbing film "Vanilla Sky.") This is nightmarish, haunting material unlike that of any other rock film of the 1960s.
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5 Comments 96 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
Upon release in 1968, Head must have seemed to serious movie and music audiences then what a Backstreet Boys movie would seem to us now. But what most didnt realize was that the Monkees were completely aware of the ludicrousness of their situation and were able to poke fun at themselves and their images. They were also a great rock band, something that music fans were for some reason in denial of. So the Monkees were stuck with the little girls, who lost interest by the time Head came out.And this is a shame, as Head not only is a wierd, hilarious snapshot of where the Monkees were situated in pop culture in the late 60's, but also a great example of late 60's experimental film-making. There is something truly different about Head, a sense that you have no idea where its going or why. The comedy is slightly high brow as well, not slapstick like the TV show. Not everyone will like it, but if you are a Monkees fan, prepare to be amazed. Be proud to show it to your friends!!!! The DVD unfortunately does not employ true widescreen, but "full screen widescreen" which I have yet to fully understand. The picture quality is varied. There are some sequences, like the opening "Porpoise Song" number, which are very scratchy and dotted, yet others look crystal clear. This may be the intent of the film-makers, yet I doubt it. The sound is great, and the many trailers and TV ads included are a treat, but a commentary track by the guys themselves would have been very welcome. An excellent edition to anyones DVD collection as it is, and you cant beat the price.
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