Imagine that you are an aspiring filmmaker and are looking for a subject to make a documentary about and stumble upon a band that eventually becomes The Who. The stars were shining upon Chris Stamp and Kit Lambert when they set out to make an underground film. Even the fact that the two men themselves got together was something of an anomaly. Lambert and Stamp came from very different backgrounds with their link being how they were intrigued by how youth of the sixties was so disenchanted.
As for the film, its subject matter was loosely thought to be something about how disillusioned young people were in London post World War II. After searching for a subject for months they came upon a band called High Numbers. The band held their attention due to its rebellious nature. All of a sudden the idea of making a film was secondary and the duo decided to manage the band. They remained as managers for the band for around a decade from the mid-sixties until the mid-seventies.
This is director James D. Cooper’s first documentary and he has jumped into the classic rock world with both feet. He allows us to be a fly on the wall as Lambert and Stamp discuss film and music plus the joys and frustrations of both. Their story is told by seamlessly weaving present day interviews with archival footage for a resulting fuller picture.
Yes, the film has a lot to do with The Who and there are some great interviews with Roger Daltry and Pete Townsend but at its heart this documentary is about the friendship forged over decades by Lambert and Stamp. Chris Stamp is a great interview and really tells great stories about the time. Plus there is a very interesting look at the sixties and the culture of the time when the two men were becoming players in the music industry.
The fact that these two men were trying to make a film benefits us because they have a lot of footage that would have otherwise gone uncaptured. Truly moments in time.
Special Features: The Who in Finland, The Who Promotional Film 1967, Where the Action Is, Call Me Lightning, Q&A with Henry Rollins & Director James D. Cooper