1967 (filmed c. 1965-67)
photography and editing
Robert Carl Cohen
produced and directed by
Robert Carl Cohen
Lewis Beach Marvin III
Dale E. Davis
Henry Scott Jr.
Richard Alpert, Ph. D.
"Great God Pan"
Mary Ewalt Guggenheim
Jimmy Carl Black
1965-67: MONDO HOLLYWOOD (Feature length documentary) Includes: Julie Andrews, Paul Newman, Sean Connery, Bridgit Bardot, Richard Burton & Elizabeth Taylor, director Alfred Hitchcock, LSD guru Dr. Richard Alpert, musician Frank Zappa, Manson Gang victim hair stylist Jay Sebring & Manson Gang member Bobby Beausoliel, & actor-politician Ronald Reagan. (Considered a bizarre work of prophecy, it has become one of the most frequently mentioned yet unseen underground cult classics)
Midnight screening, opening of 1967 Mannheim Film Festival.
Invited to open 1968 Avignon Festival & Venice Film Festival Paris worldpremiere; (canceled due to: "Interdiction Totale," by French Ministry of Information as: "A danger to mental health.")
Later Herb [Cohen] tried to squeeze money out of the producer of Mondo Hollywood for the Mothers' part in the picture. For his efforts, the Mothers were cut out of the film.
Having subsequently seen the film, I can verify that both FZ and JCB are very briefly visible in the party scene.
Zappa's scenes were not cut. There are only a few fleeting moments of him and his group, then known as "THE MOTHERS," in MONDO HOLLYWOOD. The stills contained in my website are actually frames from the film itself. Your being impressed by (radfilms.com) shows you to be a person of refinement able to appreciate the surrealistic nature of existence. Keep it up!!!
As for my comments re working with Zappa and the rest:
Zappa: I was introduced to him by his then-manager Mark Cheka, a painter friend (As you know from my Filmography I did my BA in Art and still paint occasionally) who offered to let me use The Mothers for a monster party I threw in Hollywood for the various people who'd participated in the film. I also recorded The Mothers that night, but the mike was unshielded and picked up too much crowd noise. It's my understanding that Zappa, or Cheka, or someone else also recorded that evening, and that there is a tape in underground distribution which purports to be from MONDO [the tape was eventually released oficially on the Mystery Disc as Party Scene From Mondo Hollywood]. The tape may well be from that party, but Zappa's music was NOT actually used in the MONDO sound track—which was primarily done by Davy Allen and THE ARROWS. The one or two brief conversations I had with Zappa aren't worthy of discussion. My only recollection is that he tended to be somewhat acerbic. Herbie Cohen, a New York neo-hoodlum type whose competitors received stones through their windows, with whom I'd been somewhat acquainted since 1960, and who ran up thousands of dollars in debts while running COSMO'S ALLEY prior to fleeing the USA and his creditors for several years, took THE MOTHERS from [Cheka] and commercialized them with the help of people at Capitol Records—which pitched them as every good conservative middleclass American's worst nightmare (How would you like your daughter to marry somebody like that?) You might want to get some input from Cheka.
I was friendly with Mark Cheka. Mark Cheka was a painter... And so Cheka said to me, "I understand you're gonna have a party. Who's going to play the music at your party?" I said, "I thought we'd just have some records playing or something." He said, "No, I've got this group of young guys, call themselves The Mothers. And why don't— I'll have them perform at your party." I said, "Okay." I mean, I'd never heard their music. I had no familiarity with them at all. And so we had a party with I think a hundred, two hundred people. And they were the band that was playing. I didn't bother to record them because I— First of all, the party scene was too noisy to record properly. It should have been done in the studio, the way most of our music, all of our music was done in the studio, basically, with a good set-up. And also I had no familiarity with their music whatsoever. And I said hello to Zappa. We said hello. Everyone signed a release they could be used in the film.
Talk about Monday night events. You'll never believe that the nitery business is supposed to be waning if you visit the Black Ball on a Monday eve. This past Monday I judged its watusi contest, although, believe me, I'm no authority. The Mission Hills spot was jammed continuously from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. when I left. And there were still lines waiting. Larry Coats and the U-Go-Gos rocked the stage and the bikini dancers were throwing more curves than Sandy Koufax could ever dream up. They were even shooting a movie called "Mondo Hollywood" there. This, my friends, is what one could call "a jumping joint."
QUESTION: How do you get a copy of MONDO HOLLYWOOD?
ANSWER: I've been told that there are very poor quality bootlegged VHS copies being sold at swap meets, etc. But if you'd like a moderately good copy made by me, I'll sell you one for $99.99, tax and postage included. What a deal! And made by Cohen, who left Hollywood after 55 years and now lives in the newest center of national insanity: Boulder Colorado. However, if $99.99 is too steep, and if you don't mind waiting awhile, I plan to invest a few thousand bucks in a digital video master and, using the offices of Amazon.Com or some other similar entity, selling it for a standard market price over the WWW in the next millenium.
Looking forward to hearing from you re the above.
Boulder, CO 80306
The underground cult classic of the 1960s—banned in France as "A danger to Mental Health" to be shown at MIDNIGHT, Saturday, June 10, 2006
Chaplin Screening Theater
5300 Melrose Ave., Hollywood, California
MOONDANCE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
June 8 to 11, 2006
Additional informant: Marco Ricci, Javier Marcote
YouTube: Frank Zappa (VIDEO) Mondo Hollywood (complete film) (2:01:34)Maintained by Román García Albertos