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Ian Gillan: Highway Star - A Life in Rock
Ian Gillan Highway Star - A Life in Rock
Actor: Ian Gillan
Genres: Music Video & Concerts
NR     2007     6hr 20min


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Movie Details

Actor: Ian Gillan
Genres: Music Video & Concerts
Sub-Genres: Pop, Rock & Roll, DTS
Studio: Universal UK
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 07/31/2007
Release Year: 2007
Run Time: 6hr 20min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 0
Edition: Import,Special Edition
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English
Subtitles: Spanish, Italian, French, Portuguese, German, English
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Movie Reviews

One of the best rock documentaries I've see!
Brent Soileau | Baton Rouge, LA | 03/09/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I just had a look at the new DVD, Ian Gillan: Highway Star - A Journey in Rock celebrating Ian's 40 years in the music business. I must say that the DVD is brilliant! This is an excellent and very personal look at the man, his music, his successes, and his failures. The story is told though very open and sometimes uncomfortably-honest interviews with Ian himself, of course, but also Ian's mum, Roger Glover, Jon Lord, Ian Paice, Don Airey, Steve Morse, Joe Satriani, Steve Morris, Tony Iommi, Ronnie Dio, Luciano Pavarotti, Colin Towns, Joe Elliot, "Funky" Claude Nobs, the beautiful and elegant Bron Gillan, and the late George Best.

The DVD is a thorough and detailed look at Ian's career from his first bands, which he fronted as Jess Thunder and Garth Rockett, on through Episode Six, Deep Purple, and his solo efforts. There is some amazing footage from all phases, including some great photos and rare footage that I have never seen before. There is even some footage from Ian's own private collection, never before seen, that is offered here. Some of the footage here includes television performances with Episode Six, great footage from Deep Purple's Bananas and Rapture tours, footage of the original Ian Gillan Band, and parts of a local news documentary showing rehearsals for the Gillan album Magic, showing the band tearing through a version of Lucille. Fans will be exceptionally pleased.

The interviews with former and current band members are particularly enlightening. Ian himself comes across as a very grounded, very down-to-earth, and open type of person. Of course, this will not really come as a surprise to those of us who know him. But the interviews with Roger, Paicey, and Jon offer a lot of insight into the infamous feud between Ritchie Blackmore and Ian. For those who might think that this perspective is skewed to make Ian look innocent and blameless, you would be wrong. They are very honest and open about how things went down. There is also some very enlightening hindsight offered about the Joe Lynn Turner version of the band. Joe Satch offers some great insight into the dynamics of the band as Purple were dealing with the loss of Ritchie and striving to prove that the band could exist without him. Then Steve Morse and Don Airey offer their own insight about coming into a band with such a history as Purple has and how the band's dynamic has assimilated their own styles and personalities.

There is also the discussion of the dissolution of the Gillan band. Again, this offers not only Ian's perspective on this important and uncomfortable part of his career, but also offers Gillan keyboardist Colin Towns' perspective on the matter. Of course, Colin's opinion is quite different, which has been aired and shared in the press by himself and John McCoy with no small amount of bitterness.

Of course, no documentary on Ian's career would be complete without some examination of his time in Black Sabbath. Many anecdotes about the rehearsals and recording of Born Again as well as the tour that followed are related by Gillan, his lovely wife Bron, and the inimitable Tony Iommi. I laughed so hard during this section of the documentary that I had tears in my eyes! The antics that Sabbath got up to out-Tapped Spinal Tap! And watching Tony relate the most mind-bendingly absurdities in his own quiet, soft-spoken manner made it even funnier.

The second disc is called End of Tour Blues - On the Road with Deep Purple. This disc offers lots of backstage footage showing the band arriving, setting up, and preparing for concerts in various locales. It provides a nice contrast to how Ian, as the singer, prepares for the gig as opposed to the other lads. It's also nice to have Ian himself guiding through his day as he prepares for the show, finding out how to get to the stage, taking in the ambiance and spirit of the arena, and quietly meditating to mentally and spiritually prepare for the performance. This disc includes lots of pro-shot onstage performances, offering several for each of five or six different venues including Moscow, St. Petersburg, and Cardiff among others.

In all, I can say that this is one of the best rock documentaries I have seen and I whole-heartedly recommend it to all fans of Deep Purple and of Ian Gillan. I understand the same production company is giving Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson the same treatment, and with this DVD as an indication, it should be great as well. The lighting, editing, and creative shot blocking is some of the best I've seen, the clarity of the picture is superb, and the interviewers certainly know which questions to ask. The DVD itself is a great bargain for the money, clocking in at a monstrous six-plus hours of material. And throughout it all, Ian's love of rock and roll and for Deep Purple shines through like a bright, enthusiastic, and unfailing beacon of light! This is a must-have!!!

Feb, 2007

Brent Soileau
Deep Purple Hub
One Great Autobiography
Rick Christensen | Santee, Ca. | 08/29/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This has to go down as one of the best done rock biographies ever done and I'm not just saying that because I'm a huge Deep Purple fan. Not only did my wife, who usually won't sit through something like this, watch the whole thing, my mother-in-law did too and she doesn't even like rock music. She was fascinated by Ian's story. You often hear about a new generation of fans who catch on to a older group, but how often do you hear about a older generation? This was amazingly well done and informative. Incredibly it touches all the way back to his childhood before going into his early career in music. I would strongly recommend it to any Deep Purple or Ian Gillan fan. You won't be sorry"
Fantastic---and enjoyably LONG---DVD; well worth your time &
Vince Palamara | South Park/Bethel Park, PA | 01/24/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"As a huge Deep Purple fanatic, I highly recommend this amazingly well done DVD on the legendary MK II vocalist Ian Gillan, as it is also a very accomplished biography of the band Deep Purple, as well. While there IS a small part of me that would like to deduct a tad for the overwhelming Morse-era video footage ("the best Deep Purple cover band ever"-I digress, but why were Deep Purple so up in arms about the Rod Evans debacle in 1980? After all, in both instances [the band today and then], there was only one original member present: Evans and Ian Paice), you just cannot: it is so entertaining and well done. In fact, I hated to see it end...and it is over 6 hours long (the main feature is 2 and a half hours)! Get this one asap."
An excellent sumup but lacks the spice
H. Dadon | Coral Springs, FL. United States | 06/05/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"OK, this is about Ian Gillan and he is absolutely entitled to put the story the way he wants it to be seen/read; so for obvious reasons he decides: Blackmore is not getting any spotlight here... Except for the necessary references to the past and the chronology of events, the sheer majority of this memoir (?) has a lot more of the newer Deep Purple era with Morse and Airey.
It's a greet collection (and a superb production by the way) don't get me wrong, but if any one who loves the Deep Purple family like I do, and who is looking to get the very balanced and two-sided story (which I doubt there will ever be one as such), might be a bit disappointed... Whether Gillan likes it or not (and most of us fans know the Who's and Why's), Blackmore was the propelling force and the only one to get the most and the best out of Gillan.
Gillan puts a nice touch to this fully packed story from all of his past and current adventures including some funny stories on the Black Sabbath days, so one can really get a rare glimpse into Gillan's philosophy of life. The 2xDVD set includes a lot of interviews from past and current figures in Gillan's life, including his own wife and beautiful daughter too. You won't regret buying it, so to cut my rambling short, just buy it and enjoy. Just make sure you have a bout 6hrs to spare!!!