The topic of the paper is “Gimme Shelter” movie, as a cult film of 1970, a film with unusual cautionary story. This movie shows the story of a group «The Rolling Stones» in 1969, when the Stones were at the peak of their popularity and traveled all over America on tour. But it’s not just a film about the live performance of the super popular group, but rather about the tragic events occurred during a concert in the Altamont. Having shown the murder of a man during the concert, the film thus drew attention to the problem of counterculture, and especially the problem of violence. Thus, “Gimme Shelter” signed the “end” of the 1960s counterculture. (Kirkpatrick, 2009)
Altamont race track and this concert are in the main focus in the film. Altamont was conceived as a response to the West Coast to the immense popularity of Woodstock, as the owner of the track gave it for the concert in hope of making free advertising to it. But in fact this place became famous for a cruel murder, when one of the spectators was stabbed to death by a member of the biker gang “Hell’s Angels”. And it happened not more than fifteen meters from the scene, where they played Rolling Stones. The incident, captured in the film, has a fascinating moral ambiguity, which can be found only in real life. And it is a well-made documentary, which does not violate this ambiguity.
“Gimme Shelter” is a great movie about rock ‘n ‘ roll, and well constructed documentary, and the most important that it gives a look at the end of the era of 1960-s. The most telling episode in the picture is not even the infamous scene of the murder, but the final shots, showing the audience going home the next morning after the concert: tired fans of the fading era, people helplessly walk with bleary-views in a cold, inhospitable morning light.
If the cautionary story can be inspiring and interesting, this is exactly such a story. And if Woodstock gives a feeling of nostalgia for the era of hippies and rock’n’roll, the “Gimme Shelter” recalls why it was destined to end. (Canby, 1970)
Canby V. “GIMME SHELTER”. The New York Times, December 7, 1970. Web.
Kirkpatrick, R. 1969: The Year Everything Changed. New York: Skyhorse Publishing, 2009
Quirk J. “Visions of Altamont”. The Guardian, 19 September 2009. Web.