Academic journal article Framework

Two Film Treatments: "Proposal" and Mein Campf

Academic journal article Framework

Two Film Treatments: "Proposal" and Mein Campf

Article excerpt

Aware of The Rolling Stones' massive international popularity, Peter Whitehead proposed a tele vi sion series to Andrew Oldham that was entitled The Union Jacks and starred the Stones (clearly infl uenced by The Monkees' series on NBC, 1966- 1968). Oldham ultimately decided he wasn't interested in pursuing the idea. In May 1966, on Oldham's recommendation, Allen Klein, the new manager of the band, purchased the rights to Dave Wallis's 1964 novel Only Lovers Left Alive with a view to having members of the band appear and Hollywood director (of Rebel Without a Cause, US, 1955) Nicholas Ray direct. Whitehead, who was similarly interested in working with the Stones on a feature fi lm, wrote the following treatments- one focusing on the Stones in concert, the other, Mein Campf, the fi ctional tale of a rock band that attempts to instigate a teenage revolution. The primary reason Whitehead lost interest in the idea was that shortly after he completed the treatment, Peter Watkins's 1967 Privilege (UK) was released. He would, however, go on to propose a further project to Mick Jagger, Orpheus Inc. (see next essay).

Proposal for Feature Film ( for The Rolling Stones)

P L Whitehead

18 Carlisle Street

London W.1

En gland


The rise to power of a pop group, cleverly exploited by a young and megalomaniac manager, who uses them, and their huge fi nancial success, to pursue his ideals of absolute power. Using their image and rebellious nature to attract the country's youth, he forms a secret army of under 25s channelling their dissatisfaction against current morality/religion/politics/big business, etc, into a coherent religion of revolution, organising an elite destined to be the new rulers- leaders who live for the Immediate, sensual and material satisfaction, and whose selfi shness is the logical result of, and revolt against, the apathetic complacency and hypocrisy of their elders.

Their take- over of power is effected with ease by their absolute takeover of the most powerful force in the country- the MASS MEDIA. With subtlety their infi ltration controls the collective sub- conscious of the country using their music, appearance etc. etc. until they effectively control the country. Unfortunately, the enthusiasm of the movement is such that in a fi nal, hysterical rally, in which the fans are whipped up into a frenzy of hate and lust, etc. they run completely berserk and destroy their own idols.


As documentary. General development narrated. Begins like a compilation fi lm or scrapbook of the year 1978, made in 1984- which ironically has become the best of all worlds- 1970, says the narrator, was a crisis point in the confl ict between age and youth.

The fi lm is the chronicle of the YRM- the Youth Revolt Movement (e.g.)- and such was the self indulgent egoism of the Movement that they made extensive fi lm and tape rec ords of their activities and growth believing that posterity could thus have a permanent memento of their origin, growth and success. "We are drawing extensively from these hitherto unreleased, secret archive fi lms in order to present to you today in 1984 the full ugly story of YRM . . . This is their story seen by them, compiled by us, in the fi rm belief that it could never happen again . . ."

Spoken narration comments on scenes etc., as if all the hours of material have been edited down. (This takes care of problem of acting: i.e. there will be no intimate acting scenes- all lip synch scenes can be staged- e.g. rallies.) Stills can be used- sections of "private" fi lms taken by individuals (handheld, etc) and the group's live per for mance will be at rallies/concerts etc., using their own music.

The fi lm will both celebrate and condemn pop music and Mass Media and their power.

Tone: Black comedy, rather deadpan so that the horrifi c episodes become even more horrifi c.

Story Outline

Origins of the group- lower middle class? …

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