MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 14 this week

200 Motels (1971)

R  |   |  Comedy, Fantasy, Music  |  20 November 1971 (Sweden)
5.9
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.9/10 from 1,507 users  
Reviews: 45 user | 17 critic

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

Directors:

,

Writers:

(story), (shooting script), 3 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

IMDb Picks: May

Visit our IMDb Picks section to see our recommendations of movies and TV shows coming out in May, sponsored by COVERGIRL.

Visit the IMDb Picks section

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 30 titles
created 14 Feb 2013
 
a list of 44 titles
created 23 May 2013
 
a list of 21 titles
created 12 Jun 2013
 
a list of 22 titles
created 09 Oct 2013
 
a list of 43 titles
created 20 Mar 2014
 

Related Items

Search for "200 Motels" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: 200 Motels (1971)

200 Motels (1971) on IMDb 5.9/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of 200 Motels.

User Polls

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Dub Room Special! (Video 1984)
Comedy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
Directors: Dick Darley, Clark Santee, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Frank Zappa, George Duke, Ruth Underwood
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Filmmaker Barbet Schroeder explores themes of sexual freedom, mind alteration, and pursuit of paradise against the backdrop of an early 70's encounter with the Mapuga rain forest tribe in upland New Guinea.

Director: Barbet Schroeder
Stars: Jérôme Beauvarlet, Monique Giraudy, Michael Gothard
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A band of satanist hippies roll into a town and begin terrorizing the local folk. They rape a local girl and her grandpa goes after them. He fails and is given LSD. This bothers his ... See full summary »

Director: David E. Durston
Stars: Bhaskar Roy Chowdhury, Jadin Wong, Rhonda Fultz
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Simon is a student at a college in San Francisco. He is content to be on the rowing team and remain as just a casual observer to the on-campus unrest, demonstrations and protests. However, ... See full summary »

Director: Stuart Hagmann
Stars: Bruce Davison, Kim Darby, Bud Cort
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A film shoot in Peru goes badly wrong when an actor is killed in a stunt, and the unit wrangler, Kansas, decides to give up film-making and stay on in the village, shacking up with local ... See full summary »

Director: Dennis Hopper
Stars: Julie Adams, Daniel Ades, Richmond L. Aguilar
Adventure | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Inspired by fairy-tales such as Alice in Wonderland and Little Red-Riding Hood, "Valerie and her Week of Wonders" is a surreal tale in which love, fear, sex and religion merge into one fantastic world.

Director: Jaromil Jires
Stars: Jaroslava Schallerová, Helena Anýzová, Petr Kopriva
Baby Snakes (1979)
Documentary | Comedy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Rock artist Frank Zappa hosts a concert in New York City. This movie contains tons of on-stage footage, off-stage footage, and animation.

Director: Frank Zappa
Stars: Frank Zappa, Adrian Belew, Tommy Mars
Comedy | Horror | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

Due to be crowned King of the Netherworld by his mentor Merlin the Magician at a monster's convention Count Downe, the son of Count Dracula, falls in love with the beautiful but human Amber... See full summary »

Director: Freddie Francis
Stars: Harry Nilsson, Ringo Starr, Freddie Jones
Uncle Meat (Video 1987)
Documentary | Comedy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

This is a documentary about an unfinished movie. Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention try to film the sci-fi epic "Uncle Meat."

Director: Frank Zappa
Stars: Phyllis Smith Altenhaus, Dick Barber, Massimo Bassoli
Comedy | Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  

Using takes and rehearsals discarded from the original edit plus interviews made during the shooting... See full synopsis »

Director: Frank Zappa
Stars: Phyllis Smith Altenhaus, Dick Barber, BBC Symphony Orchestra
Video from Hell (Video 1985)
Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

In a little over an hour, 'VIDEO FROM HELL' provides a preview of current and projected Honker releases, including 'BABY SNAKES', 'THE TRUE STORY OF 200 MOTELS' and 'UNCLE MEAT' (all 1987 ... See full summary »

Director: Frank Zappa
Stars: Phyllis Smith Altenhaus, Dick Barber, Adrian Belew
Animation | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Several pieces of Frank Zappa's music are set against clay animation by Bruce Bickford.

Directors: Frank Zappa, Bruce Bickford
Stars: Bruce Bickford, Frank Zappa
Edit

Cast

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

Storyline

"Touring makes you crazy," Frank Zappa says, explaining that the idea for this film 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 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

|

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 November 1971 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

Frank Zappa's 200 Motels  »

Box Office

Budget:

$679,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie was shot on videotape, at Pinewood Studios, London, England. See more »

Quotes

Larry The Dwarf: [to the viewers] Hello there. When you go on tour with a musical group, it's possible any town could look seem this. Whether it's large or small, busy or nothing happening in it. The reason for this is quite simple. As a musician, if you consider the normal pattern of modern civilized life, it's on the outside of your own. He doesn't build things. He doesn't work regular hours like a decent, God-fearing citizen. And the life he leads in many ways seems useless and irrelevant to those who prefer ...
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 »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Ring of Terror (1990) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Bizarre!
18 February 2006 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

There is no film quite like 200 Motels, but a lot of its very strange appearance (especially when viewed on a cinema screen) is due to its videotape source. (Actually, it isn't the first film released theatrically, to have been originated on this medium. One of the versions of Jean Harlow's biography to be released in 1965 used something called 'Electronovision', which is much the same thing, although it seems suspiciously like an afterthought over a successful TV play in that case.) The 1971 double album was my introduction to Zappa's music, back in 1973, and I first saw this film in 1978, on a double bill with - wait for it - Annie Hall. Now, that's bizarre. I was mesmerised by this messy production, but everyone in the cinema, including my friends, seemed to hate it. Even by 1978, the effects were dated, and the sound quality left a lot to be desired. However, ten years later, when I saw the film in on VHS, I scooped it up, and I still enjoy it.

More satire and music would have been welcome in place of the cast and orchestra being forced to recite childish swearwords, although it must be realised that this is an exercise to defuse the effect of 'bad language', much as Shaw did with Pygmalion (the original play has the word 'bloody' repeated over and over, opposed to achieving the comedy shock effect as in the 1938 movie) There are some very well worked out scenes, such as the stars' dressing-room/racehorse chute sequence, and the dialogue between Jim Black and Theodor Bikel, and maybe sufficient time and budget would have yielded more of the same.

The music was sufficient to launch me into thirty years of collecting Zappa's music, and I still enjoy it today - it's more fulfilling to listen to than the movie is to watch, but the movie is worth seeing, as long as you are not expecting anything too coherent.

In amongst the confusion is a worthwhile film about groupies, and genius, and the sadness, as opposed to the glamour, of the life of rock stars, and I can't help feeling that someone with fifty million dollars to spend could do worse than remake this. It's about time Zappa's output reached a wider audience. Stop remaking films that were fine as they were, you guys. We didn't need another Planet of the Apes, Tim Burton! Do a film about Frank Zappa. Johnny Depp could play Frank!


16 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Unwatchable parillamilt
Best 200 Motels Music musicbymartin
Please explain... Rauck_Stah
Is it just me... boog_20613
DVD release in April? jlsutt
winged eel fingerling joint-2
Discuss 200 Motels (1971) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?