'Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon'
(Various / Blu ray / NR / 2014 / Anchor Bay Entertainment)
Overview: In his directorial debut, Mike Myers (Austin Powers, Wayne's World) steps behind the camera to document the astounding career of friend and Hollywood insider Shep Gordon. He isn't a household name, but Gordon became a beacon in the entertainment industry after a chance run-in with Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin launched his career in 1968. Since then, he has managed an endless list of talent, including Alice Cooper, Blondie, Luther Vandross, Teddy Pendergrass, Groucho Marx, and Raquel Welch.
Blu ray Verdict: So, just what is Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon, I hear you all asking? Well, basically, film director Mike Myers ('Austin Powers') gets a bunch of his buddies to pay homage on-screen to 21st Century Hawaii's version of 20th Century Paris' Gertrude Stein!
However, unlike Stein's salon for intellectuals, what the denizens of Hollywood producer\music artist manager Shep Gordon have in common is that almost ALL of them are filthy rich. They can personally thank Gordon for much of their lucre, as well as their fame. Unfortunately, Gordon himself has been at the forefront of blurring the line between fame and infamy during the past 50 years.
As he observes toward the end of 'Supermensch,' "There's nothing I've ever seen in my life with fame that's healthy. It makes it hard to survive." This film makes frequent references to ill-fated Gordon intimates, including Janis Joplin, Jimmi Hendrix, and Teddy Pendergrass.
The other constant themes are Gordon's thwarted obsession to have a biological child of his own (who could inherit his "$20 million" digs on Maui), and Bad Karma (which he attempts to ward off by sleeping in the same bed his role model, the Dalai Lama reclined in at a New York City luxury hotel).
All this is enough to prompt viewers to shout at the screen, "But hey, Shep, WHOSE idea was it for Alice Cooper to start slaughtering defenseless chickens on-stage as part of his "act"?! Highly recommended, for sure, but weird as all f**k; which I truly think it was meant to come across as. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.