Most people know Mike Myers as the guy who started out on “Saturday Night Live” and created characters like Wayne Campbell from “Wayne’s World” and most notably the Austin Powers franchise. Like many actors before him, he is now stepping behind the cameras to direct. However, unlike the other actors, the movie he chose to direct is a documentary, “Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon.”
The subject matter is about a man he first met making the first “Wayne’s World”, Shep Gordon who was Alice Cooper’s manager. The song used in that movie was one of Alice’s newer songs, but Meyers wanted to use one of his classics. You would think on a high profile movie like that, Mike Meyers would get his way, but it was Shep Gordon who told him how things were going to be.
"Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon" tells the famed manager's story right from the beginning. How he first started managing singers' careers to managing top actors and even chefs from around the world. Mike Myers fills the film with interviews with all sorts of celebrities; Michael Douglas, Sylvester Stallone and Shep Gordon himself who narrates his own story in this movie. There is also a lot of "archive footage" which depicts some of what Shep is talking about. The brilliance is that all this footage does not exist. Meyers created this footage himself with actors to re-create the scenes to help tell this story. It looks like something shot off a 8mm camera. Some of the footage is pretty funny, but it is something that you don't ever see in a documentary and helps it from becoming a boring affair which is usually associated with the genre.
Have you ever heard of Shep Gordon? I first saw "Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon" a few months ago at the 31st Annual Miami International Film Festival and while I have been an Alice Cooper fan, I was unaware of this man's existence. After seeing the movie I was surprised that I didn't know about him because he has touched the lives of so many people that I do know about, you would think his name would come up at least once. You certainly understand why Mike Meyers wanted to make this movie and he does a great job for his first directing effort ever. You can also see my interview with Shep Gordon by clicking the video above.
The movie has plenty of surprising revelations too. One big one is that he was on the airplane that almost crashed with director Cameron Crowe which inspired the scene at the end of "Almost Famous" and wait until you find out what really happened. You also really get to know the man himself and how he is tagged with the name Supermensch despite an early image of him in the film wearing a t-short that read, "No head, no backstage pass." Shep Gordon is the kind of man who would have dropped anything to go help a friend.
Documentaries are usually not many people's cup of tea, but "Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon" is one of the best documentaries to come out in years. Mike Meyers has woven together an engaging and entertaining film that will help get you to know a man you almost want to call a friend by the time it ends. That is how well you'll get to know him. It is rated R for language, some sexual references, nudity and drug use.