6.6/10
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121 user 43 critic

Head (1968)

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1:04 | Trailer

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The Monkees are tossed about in a psychedelic, surrealist, plotless, circular bit of fun fluff.

Director:

Bob Rafelson
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Tork ... Peter
Davy Jones ... Davy (as David Jones)
Micky Dolenz ... Micky
Michael Nesmith ... Mike
Victor Mature ... The Big Victor
Annette Funicello ... Minnie
Timothy Carey ... Lord High 'n Low
Logan Ramsey ... Off. Faye Lapid
Abraham Sofaer ... Swami
Vito Scotti ... I. Vitteloni
Charles Macaulay Charles Macaulay ... Inspector Shrink
T.C. Jones T.C. Jones ... Mr. and Mrs. Ace
Charles Irving Charles Irving ... Mayor Feedback
William Bagdad ... Black Sheik
Percy Helton ... Heraldic Messenger
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Storyline

Running in from seemingly nowhere, Micky Dolenz, Davy Jones, Michael Nesmith & Peter Tork - better known collectively as The Monkees - disrupt a bridge opening ceremony. From where and why did they come to disrupt the proceedings? They were filming a series of vignettes in several different genres, including a wild west sequence, a desert war sequence, a Confederate war sequence, and a science fiction sequence. They disagree with much of what is happening around them, and try to figure out how to escape the oppression they feel - symbolized by a big black box in which they are seemingly imprisoned - by the forces around. That oppression is often shown in the form of "The Big Victor Mature". Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

What is HEAD all about? Only John Brockman's shrink knows for sure!


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Italian

Release Date:

20 November 1968 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Changes See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$750,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Raybert Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Black and White | Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie's origin was in Ojai, California, where The Monkees, Bob Rafelson, and co-Writer Jack Nicholson spent a weekend in a resort motel verbally tossing story ideas into a tape recorder. This became the basis of the script. The Monkees weren't credited because, according to Micky Dolenz, "We didn't write any of the actual dialogue". See more »

Goofs

When Micky jumps from the bridge at the start of the film, the replacement dummy enters the water head first. In the next shot, when we see the real Micky entering the water as seen from below, he enters feet first. See more »

Quotes

Jack Nicholson: What's wrong?
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no credits at the beginning. They all appear at the end of the film. See more »

Alternate Versions

When the film was previewed in August 1968, its original cut ran about 110 mins. It was trimmed down to 86 mins. for the premiere. See more »

Connections

Featured in Laserdisc Memories: The Criterion Collection (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Long Title: Do I Have to Do This All Over Again
Written by Peter Tork
Performed by The Monkees (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Truly one of the most underrated masterpieces in film-making.
12 October 2004 | by cornelius-7See all my reviews

I will admit, I had the opportunity in the past to watch this film, and after about 5 - 10 minutes into it, I felt like many did. I was expecting a Monkey movie that was similar to the television show, but instead I was given... well, I didn't know what I was given to be honest.

However, after finally watching this film, I realized that not only had I had a closed mind to the brilliance it depicts, I also found myself watching it over and over again. It's the one movie that never ceases to interest me, simply because it keeps me alert, as I try to attempt to decipher it's meanings. And just when I think I've figured out something in the film, it's answer is destroyed once I watch the film again. Brilliance indeed.

It seems that most people who disliked this film are wanting to watch a film with primarily a clear plot. They want everything explained and all questions answered in the finale. Well sorry, if that's what you're wanting, this is not the movie for you. But if you liked movies like The Matrix (and better yet, their sequels) I think you'll appreciate the thought provoking, mindblowing experience this film will give you.

Think of the film being like a dream. In our dreams, things make no sense, things we expect to happen don't, people places and things don't speak, act or function in the same way they do in reality. To complain about "Head" is like complaining about a dream you've had that you felt you could not understand. The mind is a complex system, and being that a film titled "Head" is just as complex, is it that difficult to relate the two?

The music (and musical numbers) really stand out, especially Peter Tork's two compositions, which remain the best tracks in the film, "Can You Dig It?" and "Long Title: Do I Have To Do This All Over Again?"

This film proves that The Monkees were much more than just four zanny guys in a 'pre-fab' group (as their critics called them) on a television show, but that they are actually much more intelligent and talented than the world would give them credit for. There's so many messages that can be derived from the film, both in regards to The Monkees and to the 'entertainment industry' in general, that it stands as a masterpiece of film-making that was far ahead of it's time.

I feel, had this film been released as an independent piece at this point and time, it would actually garner the respect and admiration it deserves.

And one finale note:

One could compare this to The Beatles "Magical Mystery Tour" film, since The Beatles film appeared to be just as strange and bizarre. However, in my opinion, "Head" stands far above anything The Beatles put on celluloid.


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