Book Review: The Monkees, Head And The 60’s.
By Fred Velez
Peter Mills’ book, ‘The Monkees, Head and the 60’s’ offers a fascinating exploration of the Monkees 1968 movie and how events in the turbulent 1960’s helped to shape the Pop Culture of the times, which included the Monkees as a television series, a musical group, and in the movie ‘Head’, symbols of the decade’s unrest.
In a scholarly approach, Mill’s examines the beginnings of the Monkees’s cultural phenomenon along with the events of the 1960’s and how all these elements converged in the creation of the movie ‘Head’ with a cross examination of both the film and it’s working script with a behind the scenes look at the machinations that helped to shape the film into the cultural statement director Bob Rafelson and co-script writer Jack Nicholson were aiming for. The book tackles the movie’s initial commercial failure and it’s resurgence as a cult film and a recognized work of art.
The book is well researched with a very thorough background on each of the Monkees as well as Bob Rafelson, Bert Schneider, Jack Nicholson and how and why controversial events like the Vietnam War that the Monkees were discouraged from commenting on were incorporated with shocking effect into the movie ‘Head’. Mills’ explores the film’s underlying theme of media manipulation and Monkees attempts to escape the black box, a symbol of their own fame imprisoning them.
The book is a thought provoking look at ‘Head’ as well a deeper look into the life stories of the Monkees and the individuals involved in the creation of the Monkees project and how it all converged with the events of the 1960’s.
‘The Monkees, Head and the 60’s’ by Peter Mills is a book that should not only appeal to fans of the Monkees and the film, but also puts into perspective how the events of the 1960’s were instrumental in the direction the Monkees TV series and shaped the artistic direction of the movie ‘Head’. Highly recommended.
Fred Velez, 2016.
Fred Velez is the author of the book ‘A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You: The Monkees From A Fan’s Perspective’.