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Frank Zappa - 200 Motels (The Movie) CD (album) cover

200 MOTELS (THE MOVIE)

Frank Zappa

 

RIO/Avant-Prog

2.85 | 43 ratings

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UMUR
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars 200 Motels ( The Movie) is nearly a disaster IMO and really not worth your money. Zappa was after his failed attempt to release the Uncle Meat movie anxious to make and release another movie and that turned out to be 200 Motels. The dialog is written on tour busses and in hotel rooms and it shows that not much thought has been put into this. Zappa was a great composer, producer and musician but he should have stayed away from making movies as this is something he didnīt have a talent for IMO.

Itīs hard to really understand what the movie is about other than a very simple story about a rockīnīroll band on tour and their groupie status. Besides that there is an animated movie which is the only treat here about Jeff who ripps the towels from his hotel room. Itīs actually pretty funny and it is acompanied by one of the greatest songs from the soundtrack sung in cartoon style. This very part of the movie saves 2 stars for 200 Motels even though it really only deserves 1. Other good things in the movie is of course the rock music. I still feel that some of the rock songs played here are some of Zappaīs best straight rock songs ever.

The movie has lots of strange personas and an even more strange scene with fishheaded things and vacuum cleaners dancing ballet. Iīm sorry but I just donīt appreciate half of the humour in the movie and quite frankly Iīm not entertained. Keith Moon and Ringo Starr also have roles in the movie, which might have brought some The Beatles or The Who fanatics to buy 200 Motels. What a shock they must have gotten. The narrator Theodore Bikel has a very pleasant voice and I enjoy the finale where he also sings. Mark Volman and Howard Kaylan are here too and they always make for a fun experience in my ears.

The filming is not done very professonaly and the quality is often murky and the sound is bad.

2 stars is all I can give for 200 Motels ( the Movie). I would recommend that you get the soundtrack instead as all the great songs from the movie are also featured there. Both the movie and the soundtrack are some of the least exciting releases in Zappaīs career though and really only for the fans. There are some great songs on the soundtrack, but due to the bad production and the orchestral parts which I donīt care much for that one is also mostly a fan thing.

UMUR | 2/5 |

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