The Treasures of Long Gone John

by Gregg Gibbs

Availability: Out of stock

$39.95
An exotic documentary about John Edward Mermis, a first rate oddball Southern Californian – a denizen of Long Beach who collects pop ephemera, especially toys, books and works of "lowbrow art." He also has run a low budget indie record company for the past 17 years, turning out over 750 albums by over 550 groups, mainly punk and retro-rock, and helping to launch the careers of White Stripes, Hole, The Dwarfs, and Rocket from the Crypt, among many others.

This film marks the directing debut of Gregg Gibbs, whose main line until now has been production design (including the current film, "Black Dahlia"). "TLGJ" is a hugely ambitious project. Besides profiling Long Gone John, it seeks to cover the field of lowbrow art and also the music that John has promoted on his label, "Sympathy for the Music Industry." We learn that all through the recording years, he's never signed a written contract with anyone. Everything's been done on a handshake; every musician is always free to drift away. And many do, which John is resigned to. He bills himself as the "anti-mogul."

John is interviewed at length, and material is presented in segments laced through the film. He's just plain interesting to listen to. He also hosts a tour of his home, which is filled to the ceiling with his collections ("You collect this mass of stuff…and then you die," he says). We also learn a lot about John from the art (graphic, musical) and artists that fascinate him.

The Treasures of Long Gone John

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