7.9/10
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Gimme Shelter (1970)

A harrowing documentary of the Stones' 1969 tour, with much of the focus on the tragic concert at Altamont.

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3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Themselves
...
...
...
Himself (as Keith Richard)
...
Himself
...
Himself
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Marty Balin ...
Himself (as Jefferson Airplane)
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...
Dick Carter ...
Himself
Jack Casady ...
Himself (as Jefferson Airplane)
Mike Clarke ...
Himself (as The Flying Burrito Brothers)
Sam Cutler ...
Spencer Dryden ...
Himself (as Jefferson Airplane)
Chris Hillman ...
Himself (as The Flying Burrito Brothers)
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Storyline

A documentary on the Rolling Stones' 1969 US tour and the tragic events that concluded it. We see footage of their concerts and of them making the Sticky Fingers album in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. However, the main focus of the film is on one concert - Altamont Speedway, outside San Francisco, 6 December 1969. A free concert, it is the Stones' idea and it was meant to be the Woodstock of the West (Woodstock having occurred four months earlier). Other bands performing included Jefferson Airplane, The Flying Burrito Brothers, Ike and Tina Turner, Crosby Stills Nash and Young and Santana. However, it is far from being the peace and love of Woodstock. Part of the problem is that the Stones hired the Hells Angels as security. The other problem was that a large portion of the crowd were high on drugs. Friction ensues. During the Stones' set, Meredith Hunter, high on methamphetamine and armed with a gun, makes a lunge for the stage and is stabbed to death by the Hells Angels. The peace and ... Written by grantss

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Taglines:

The music that thrilled the world ... and the killing that stunned it! See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

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Release Date:

6 December 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Los Rolling Stones (Gimme Shelter)  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$18,576, 13 August 2000, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$252,570, 19 November 2000
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Company Credits

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

It was reported in the San Jose Mercury that the California Highway Patrol observed heavy traffic from as far away as Bakersfield caused by cars headed to this concert. If current laws were enforced in 1969, The Rolling Stones would have received a bill from the California Highway Patrol and other law enforcement agencies for traffic enforcement duties related to this event. See more »

Quotes

Mick Jagger: I cannot see what's going on. I just know that every time we get to a number, something happens. I don't know what's going on. Who's doing what? It's just a scuffle. All I can ask you, San Francisco, is like the whole thing, like, this could be the most beautiful evening we've had for this winter. You know and we've really - Why, don't, let's - get up man - let's get it together! I can't do any more than just ask you. To beg you - just to keep it together. You can do it! It's wihin your power. ...
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Connections

Referenced in Kissing Jessica Stein (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

You Gotta Move
Written by Fred McDowelll & Gary Davis (as Reverend Gary Davis)
Performed by The Rolling Stones
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Get the DVD
1 August 2006 | by See all my reviews

This sort of "artistic documentary" marks a milestone in our culture and it's really a must-see for people interested in history. The DVD version contains important additional features such as excerpts from a long KSAN call-in show the next day. Some of the callers were principals in this event and their commentary is valuable. In addition, there are some incredible still photo collections on the DVD that go even further to capture the climate at this event.

There is a lot of talk about "Hells Angels" this and that in the reviews here. The Hells Angels were not the primary problem - it was a terrible combination of sloppy organization, third parties who reneged on deals and contributed to the problem, and the concert-goers themselves. As some callers to the KSAN show commented, "I was at Woodstock, and Altamont was completely different. Nobody came together. We had no spirit of community. The whole thing was hurried and stayed tense throughout." So imagine 300,000 people working hard to get their groove on quickly - since the concert was only confirmed a day or two prior - using whatever they could roll up in a paper, stir into their cheap wine, or drop on a sugar cube. Then their heroes come up onto the 20'x20'x3'-high stage and viola, you have a massive problem on your hands whether security was Superman, Sgt. Joe Friday and his partner Bill Gannon, Acme Security out of Walla Walla, or the Hells Angels. There was going to be violence. It certainly didn't help that the organizers told the HA to park their bikes right next to the stage. With the crowd as it was, that was guaranteed disaster for a few people.

What a way to end the '60s flower power era.


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