5.9/10
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200 Motels (1971)

"Touring makes you crazy", Frank Zappa says, explaining that the idea for this movie came to him while the Mothers of Invention were touring. The story, interspersed with performances by ... See full summary »

Directors:

Tony Palmer, Frank Zappa

Writers:

Frank Zappa (story and screenplay), Tony Palmer (shooting script) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mark Volman Mark Volman ... Member of Mothers of Invention
Howard Kaylan Howard Kaylan ... Member of Mothers of Invention
Ian Underwood Ian Underwood ... Member of Mothers of Invention
Aynsley Dunbar Aynsley Dunbar ... Member of Mothers of Invention
George Duke ... Member of Mothers of Invention
Theodore Bikel ... Rance Muhammitz / Dave
Keith Moon ... The Hot Nun
Jimmy Carl Black ... Lonesome Cowboy Burt
Janet Neville-Ferguson ... Groupie #1 (as Janet Ferguson)
Martin Lickert Martin Lickert ... Jeff
Lucy Offerall Lucy Offerall ... Groupie #2
Dick Barber Dick Barber ... Bif Debris - The Vacuum Cleaner
Don Preston Don Preston ... Don
Pamela Des Barres ... Interviewer (as Pamela Miller)
Ruth Underwood Ruth Underwood ... Fake Drummer
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Storyline

"Touring makes you crazy", Frank Zappa says, explaining that the idea for this movie came to him while the Mothers of Invention were touring. The story, interspersed with performances by the Mothers and the Royal Symphony Orchestra, is a tale of life on the road. The band members' main concerns are the search for groupies and the desire to get paid. Written by George S. Davis

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Fantasy | Music

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 November 1971 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Frank Zappa's 200 Motels See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$679,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Cited as the first British-made example of the videotape-to-film process. See more »

Quotes

Rance Muhammitz: [as a TV show host, holding a microphone] Hi Larry, its good to have you back on our panel!
Larry The Dwarf: [holding a magic lamp] Hi Dave, its really great to be back on your panel!
Rance Muhammitz: I'm sure the people at home would be interested to know why such a large force as you is all dressed up like Frank Zappa. Tell us Larry, whats the deal?
Larry The Dwarf: He made me do it, Dave. He's such a creep. He's making me hold this aladdin.
Rance Muhammitz: And why is he making you do that, Larry?
Larry The Dwarf: He wants me to fuck the girl with the harp.
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The closing credits are super-imposed over a number of production-related documents, including sheet music, scripts, shooting directions, memos, and expense reports. See more »

Alternate Versions

A laserdisc issue deletes the "Dental Hygiene Dilemma/quasi-Donald Duck on acid" animation sequence. See more »

Connections

Referenced in John's Arm: Armageddon (2008) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Jeff's imagination has gone beyond the fringe of audience comprehension!
4 February 2006 | by sjohntucsonSee all my reviews

I guess most people would probably absolutely loathe this movie, but I'm not most people. If you're looking for plot, intricately drawn characters, thoughtful shot composition, look elsewhere.

Now, if you like to have the video and audio input channels into your cerebrum overloaded from the start, you'll definitely love it. This movie does not relent. I guarantee, if you drop acid first, your brain will be bleeding by the end of it.

I never thought the Flo & Eddie version of the Mothers was the best, but I do think they translated pretty well to the super-color-saturated multi-layered shot-and-mixed-entirely-on-videotape visual paradigm here. Kaylan & Volman are such atypical-looking pop stars (and yes, children, they were indeed pop stars once upon a time, in a band called The Turtles), the sets so purposefully fake & cheesy, the dada knob turned up so far past eleven, that any aficionado of TOO MUCH! really owes it to themselves to let this movie burn a hole in their brain.


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