When this documentary was first released on home video in 1981 (under the title The Doors: A Tribute to Jim Morrison), it was arguably the best video biography of late Doors leader Jim Morrison.
When this documentary was first released on home video in 1981 (under the title The Doors: A Tribute to Jim Morrison), it was arguably the best video biography of late Doors leader Jim Morrison. With its rerelease on VHS and DVD-Video more than 20 years later, it stands the test of time. Key players in Morrison's life are interviewed, including surviving Doors members Ray Manzarek, Robby Krieger, and John Densmore; producer Paul Rothchild; and band associate Danny Sugerman, who co-wrote the landmark Doors biography No One Here Gets out Alive. Best of all, there is plenty of performance footage and interviews with Morrison to give added depth. The operative word to this documentary is "tribute," since the majority of comments about Morrison are pure adulation, describing him as a misunderstood poetic genius. Any mention of his dark side tends to be cloaked in vague references to him partying too much or such repeated statements as "Morrison always lived on the edge," without going into any sordid details. However, there is the honest testimony that Morrison's vices and contradictory personality made him difficult. As a visual story of his impact on the Doors, this documentary is simple but effective. But as a DVD-Video, it falls extremely short of expectations, since there is not any extra footage exclusive to it. That said, this item won't find much appeal beyond die-hard Doors fans.—CH