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Cease to Exist (2007)

7.2
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"Cease To Exist" explores the music motive to the Manson murders and uncovers Charles Manson's relationship with Beach Boys' drummer Dennis Wilson and record producer Terry Melcher.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Colin Moneymaker ...
Narrator (voice)
Al Jardine ...
Himself - Beach Boys' Guitarist, Vocalist (archive footage) (as Alan Jardine)
...
Himself - Beach Boys' Drummer (archive footage)
...
Himself - Beach Boys' Producer, Arranger (archive footage)
Carl Wilson ...
Himself - Beach Boy's Guitarist (archive footage)
Ed Roach ...
Himself - Founder of the Roach-Clips Archive (archive footage)
Vincent Bugliosi ...
Himself - Prosecutor, Manson Trial (archive footage)
Charles Watson ...
Himself - Fmr Family Member, Convicted Murderer (archive footage) (as Charlie 'Tex' Watson)
Paul Watkins ...
Himself - Fmr Family Member (archive footage)
Charles Manson ...
Himself - Singer & Songwriter, Convicted Murderer (archive footage)
Sandra Good ...
Herself - Dedicated Family Member (archive footage)
Gregg Jakobson ...
Himself - Songwriter, Friend of Dennis' (archive footage)
Bill Murphy ...
Himself - BBC Reporter (archive footage)
Steven Desper ...
Himself - Recording Engineer (archive footage)
Terry Melcher ...
Himself - Record Producer (archive footage)
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Storyline

"Cease To Exist" explores the music motive to the Manson murders and uncovers Charles Manson's relationship with Beach Boys' drummer Dennis Wilson and record producer Terry Melcher. Wilson met Charlie through two hitchhikers whom he had picked up, and for the next six months Charlie and his 'Family' lived in Wilson's home. It was here that Wilson introduced Manson to Terry Melcher and the two became fascinated with Manson's musical abilities, prophetic image and band of hedonistic young worshipers. Manson prevailed upon his new celebrity friends to produce an album that would send other Artist's packing. After a few wrecked cars, medical expenses and $100,000 lost, Dennis kicked Manson and the family off his property. On top of that, The Beach Boy's took a song Manson wrote for them entitled "Cease to Exist" and changed the lyrics, the title, and did not credit a furious Manson. After Wilson and Melcher allegedly reneged on a record deal, Manson sought revenge. After numerous threats,... Written by Ryan Oksenberg

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Was music the murder motive?


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Release Date:

15 July 2007 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?

Connections

Edited from Summer Dreams: The Story of the Beach Boys (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

Eyes of a Dreamer
Performed by Charles Manson
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User Reviews

 
Good Idea, Okay Entertainment, Too Much "Been There Done That"
25 May 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Cease To Exist depends entirely of footage lifted directly from other Charles Manson and Beach Boy documentaries/specials that were decently edited together to tell the story of the meeting of two families, one of rock, the other of murder.

It's at it's best when contrasting the good time rock and roll of the Beach Boys with the creepy folk music of Manson and his followers. I wish it would have done more to contrast the relationships of Manson with his "family" and the Wilson family.

Too many times it strays away from the story of Dennis Wilson and Charles Manson's relationship with one another and goes into more familiar territory.

My advice to the filmmaker: Film some new interviews with some new, never before heard stories. Get some of the people from the archival footage to repeat some of their anecdotes for your cameras and put it in place of the old. Drop the weak narration from Colin Moneymaker(!) and re-record it with a recognizable voice like Gary Busey or Kris Kristofferson.

I admit that I've seen more than my fair share of Charles Manson films and documentaries, so my review is probably slanted a bit toward the negative. People less familiar with the other films would probably give this a couple more stars than I did.

The list of acknowledgments at the end were incomplete. I noticed portions of The Helter Skelter Murders, Helter Skelter (1976), and even a few frames of Manson Family Movies.


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