Imagine - The Manson Family
Jim VanBebber / US, 1997 / 95 min.
Raw, unpolished cult film plunges the viewer deep into the insanity of Charles Manson and his followers.
A group of hippies celebrates their summer of love with sex & drugs & rock “n” roll under the watchful eye of guru Charles Manson. Until Manson convinces them to commit one of the most notorious mass murders in American history, with Sharon Tate, the pregnant wife of Roman Polanski, as its most famous victim. Raw, unpolished cult film plunges the viewer deep into the insanity of Charles Manson and his followers.
Insane cult leader Charles Manson (1934-2017) is the subject of two feature films this year, including one by Quentin Tarantino. Underground filmmaker Jim Van Bebber already made both a defiant and shocking attempt to interpret the phenomenon in 1997. It cost him no less than fifteen years to realise his pet project, but the result is worth it. Van Bebber focuses not so much on Manson himself as on his followers, and in the gritty style of 70”s low budget exploitation films, he manages to depict the madness that turned sex orgies into an orgy of violence like no other.