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Customer reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
24
4.3 out of 5 stars
Format: DVD|Change
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on 14 August 2015
Awesome history and profound influence on my life alongside Hunter S Thompson:)
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on 10 June 2017
old and bitty but amazing story ........
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on 3 February 2013
This pre Beatles Magical Mystery Tour shows Ken Kesey paving the way with his Merry pranksters by starting out in 1964 on a real psychedelic trip in a painted bus. This is the real event of "The Electric Cool Aid Acid Test" . The Merry Pranksters helped show the way to what the Beatles discovered many years later. Captured on film this is a historic documentry of the pioneers of psychedelia clearly shows the spirit of revolution that evolved in the early sixties.
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on 2 February 2012
Fascinating documentary into a part of Ken Kesey's life and the Merry Pranksters.
Also a good insight on LSD when it first began tests and street use.
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on 20 September 2011
I saw this film in the theater and found it to be a fascinating testament to an amazing man and a time in space that is hard to put into perspective. Did the Merry Pranksters change the world? By driving across America, handing out LSD, did they raise the consciousness of a generation? That could be debated, but what cannot is the fantastic footage from that period. Although not a perfect film by any means, it is defitely worth a view.
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on 2 November 2014
I had seen this on the TV some years back and enjoyed it or a version of it. It was a mad period how they got away with it though is anyones guess. It was new a few years later would be a different out come, with the anti hippie, anti civil rights atmosphere and the Vietnam war. This visual documentary sits well with Tom Wolfe's 'The Electric Kool–Aid Acid Test.
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on 22 January 2012
I just got around to watching this and it is a truly marvelous documentary covering an enormously important era of modern American History. Regardless of whether or not you are familiar with the
Merry Pranksters you will learn a lot about the 1960s counterculture and the dawn of the San Franciscan underground by watching this remarkable film. Top marks.
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on 20 March 2012
Odd,eccentric home movie.

For those interested in the LSD trip and the feel for the era this is an interesting and valuable time capsule.
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on 30 January 2012
This documentary takes footage shot by Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters, primarily on a journey in a psychedelically painted school bus, from California to the 1964 World's Fair in New York and back, but also covering the emerging hippy/acid rock scene in San Francisco.

The nature of the equipment (hand held 16mm cine cameras with audio recorded on reel to reel tapes) and the operators (who were off their heads on one or more drugs for the majority of the filming), meant that previous attempts, by Kesey himself, to edit the footage into a coherent narrative had failed.

The technique used in this documentary, taking the original footage and using voiceover and overlaid psychedelic graphics, along with some properly synched audio where it was possible, really works. What amazed me was the sheer amount of material that was shot, together with the freshness of it. It gives an insight into the idealism of the time, and it doesn't ignore the damage that the hedonistic lifestyle wreaked on some of the participants.

There are a few sequences - the farmer towing the bus out of sand, and a cop questioning the travellers at the roadside - where you wonder just what 'straight' people made of people who were so off their heads on LSD. Did they realise, or was awareness of the hippy/freak lifestyle not that high?

All in all I thoroughly enjoyed the film. I've watched it twice so far and I'll certainly be watching it again.
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on 20 April 2013
This film is great. A tour de force of insight into the pre-hippie revolution. These guys started it all and the amount of authentic footage is mindboggling....a must see!
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