Supermensch: The Shep Gordon Story: Movie Review
Cast: Shep Gordon, Tom Arnold, Mike Myers, Alice Cooper, Michael Douglas, Sylvester Stallone
Director: Mike Myers
Chances are the name Shep Gordon will not be one which many of us are familiar with.
But stepping behind the lens, Austin Powers' star Mike Myers is determined to change that perception.
Weaving a tale of Hollywood behind the scenes, Supermensch: The Shep Gordon Story offers up a snapshot of what exactly Gordon has offered to the entertainment world in his years of service.
Sex, drugs, the Playboy mansion, rock and roll are all prevalent in this tale - what would you expect for a man whose T Shirt says "No head, no backstage pass" and who's associated with so many people who have reputations?
Through a pacy documentary, replete with supercuts and a gentle OST, Myers proves to be a relative talent behind the lens as well as in front. Peppering Gordon's stories with recreations proves to be a smart move, even though there's plenty of photographic evidence on hand.
That said, it could be levelled at Myers that he's a little too close to the subject having fallen on this benefactor for help when needed, so a bit more professional distance may have been of use and given the doco less of a feel of a film that's more bathed in light than shades of grey.
Though that could be said that the subject is partly to blame; a man who believes in karma and about whom very few have a bad word to say means there's little darkness in this tale over than some health issues toward the end.
The doco is also one of two halves as well, with Gordon's warning early on that "If I do my job properly, I will probably kill you" proving the entrance into the Hollywood way of life, Janis Jopli, Jimi Hendrix, Teddy Pendergrass and Alice Cooper. Cooper proves to be the real highlight as the almost svengali-like Gordon appears to have been more of a force than many would believe he has credit for
But around 40 minutes in, Myers suddenly detours into Gordon's personal life giving him a human edge that's a little more needed and a rounder picture of the nice guy of showbiz.
For Myers, Supermensch is a surprising documentary in terms of subject and of his life, but it doesn't deviate too far from the norm of the genre, despite Myers' adeptness at bringing it to life on the screen.
Pleasingly put together and smartly executed, it's eminently watchable but lacks an occasional depth as it leads to its cautionary ending. A confident doco but one that could have done with more of an injection of another point of view, Supermensch is the story of a nice guy done good. In this day and age, that's a rarity to be celebrated.