June 5, 2014

Review of 'Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon'

Did you know that there is a man who is actually ‘the most interesting man in the world?’  His name is Shep Gordon and he is the epitome of a rock star (without actually being a rock star.) Supermensch (which is the directorial debut of actor/comedian Mike Myers) documents the life of mega- music manager Shep Gordon, who is known for managing some of the most legendary musicians in history like Alice Cooper, Blondie, Luther Vandross, Teddy Pendergrass, and many more. He also invented the term “celebrity chef,” which launched the career of Emeril Lagassee.

The film is a collection of celebrity interviews, reenactments, and archived videos and photos, which showcase the legendary life of Shep Gordon.  Now you’re probably asking “Why should I care about this guy?” When I tell you that this man has lived the most fascinating life I have ever seen, I am not lying. He got punched by Janis Joplin, was bouncing off career ideas with Jimi Hendrix, and had a posse that included John Lennon. Celebrities flock to his private island to relax (he has an extremely generous open door policy) and he can make sure that paparazzi leave them alone.

In the roughly 90 minute film you see Shep’s life as a young Jewish kid, the crazy things he did to bring attention to his clients (there is an incident involving Alice Cooper and a chicken), and his life now as an older man. He talks a lot about his desire for children and it really pulls at your heartstrings. Like I was ready to hook him up with an e-harmony account, that’s how badly I felt for him. You really become emotionally invested and want the best for him in the end. The film is also just really entertaining. I felt like I could’ve sat there for another 30 minutes listening to another crazy story. The time really flies by!

A few weeks after screening this, I was walking down the street and saw Shep casually talking on his cell. He was so sweet, and ended his phone call just to chat with me and tell me about all the press events he was doing. I can see why so many people care about him. He is very personable and pleasant. Like a person who has clearly had a life well-lived. I feel that I could learn more from him in 30 minutes than I would in an entire semester of school. He is an out-of-the box thinker and seems to truly care about people. This is an excellent directorial debut for Myers (and I think I can forgive him for The Love Guru, too!) Definitely keep an eye on this film, coming out tomorrow in select theatres! B+

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