April 9th, 2010
When You're Strange, a film about The Doors
About The Film

“The story of The Doors is one of the most compelling in the history of American rock music; three hugely talented musicians and a lead singer whose commitment to artistic freedom was so intense he rocketed them to a success that always hovered on the edge of chaos. As an independent filmmaker this sensibility affected me greatly.”
– Tom DiCillo, director and writer, When You’re Strange

The creative chemistry of four brilliant artists – drummer John Densmore, guitarist Robby Krieger, keyboardist Ray Manzarek and singer Jim Morrison – made The Doors one of America’s most iconic and influential, theatrical and mysterious, thrilling and sometime frightening rock bands. Narrated by Johnny Depp, American Masters: When You’re Strange is the first feature documentary about The Doors, premiering nationally Wednesday, May 12, 2010 at 9 p.m. (ET) on PBS (check local listings). The film tells their story using only original footage – much of it previously unseen – shot between their formation in 1965 and Morrison’s death in 1971. “From the outset I decided to use only original footage of this astonishing band,” says Tom DiCillo, director and writer of When You’re Strange. “To me, there is nothing more powerful and riveting that seeing Robby Krieger, Ray Manzarek, John Densmore and Jim Morrison leap into life on the screen.”

Watch a preview of the film:

The program chronicles the creation of The Doors six landmark studio albums and follows the band from the corridors of UCLA’s film school, where Manzarek and Morrison originally met, onto the stages of their electrifying sold-out performances – giving time and attention to every one of their groundbreaking, chart topping songs.

Currently in its 24th season, American Masters is a production of THIRTEEN in association with WNET.ORG – one of America’s most prolific and respected public media providers.

“We’re very excited to bring the story of The Doors to public television, says Susan Lacy, series creator and executive producer of American Masters, a seven-time winner of the Emmy Award for Outstanding Primetime Non-Fiction Series. “Like the times in which they performed, The Doors were unpredictable and emotionally charged. Their music, songs such as ‘Break on Through’ and ‘Light My Fire’ have stood the test of time, grabbing generation after generation of contemporary music lovers.”

“Tom DiCillo’s When You’re Strange is a meticulously crafted, exhilarating ode to one of music’s greatest ensembles, The Doors,” says Johnny Depp. “Watching the hypnotic, hitherto, unreleased footage of Jim, John, Ray and Robby, I felt like I experienced it all through their eyes. Here, Jim has been resurrected to remind us that he is to this very day, one of the most significant frontmen/poets/shaman to ever grace a stage while the band behind him kept the music alive, adding fuel to an already raging ride into history. As a rock n’ roll documentary, or any kind of documentary for that matter, it simply doesn’t get any better than this. What an honor to have been involved. I am as proud of this as anything I have ever done.”

The rare cinéma vérité of When You’re Strange allows an intimate view into The Doors musical collaboration and their offstage lives – lives that reflected and defined the psychedelic times in the exciting but turbulent, changing but conflict-ridden America of the Viet Nam War era. The Doors were fiercely anti-establishment, anti-convention and pushed the proverbial envelope whenever possible – with their language, with their blatant sexuality, with their impulsive displays and, of course, with their music.

Jim Morrison’s haunting poetry and Ray Manzarek’s remarkable flights on the keyboard, backed by Densmore’s jazz beats and Krieiger’s intense guitar, created something that had never been heard before. The Doors achieved meteoric status as they soared to stardom but the excesses of their lead singer, Jim Morrison, resulted in an equally deep and abrupt crash. Dead at age 27, every question about the truths and myths of the times, about art and addiction, about authority and defiance – about alienation – were embodied in his persona.

“They say if you remember the 60s you weren’t there,” says producer Dick Wolf. “I can state definitively that one of the things I do remember is buying The Doors first album the day it came out and then listening to it about ten or twelve times in a row. Both sides. Every song. I’ve been a fan ever since. This movie is the story of the band but it is also an insight into a moment in time that will never be repeated. Jim Morrison was the best and worst of all of us who ever felt we could change the world if only people over thirty would listen.”

American Masters: When You’re Strange is directed and written by Tom DiCillo and produced by John Beug, Jeff Jampol, Peter Jankowski and Dick Wolf. Johnny Depp narrates. Susan Lacy is the series creator and executive producer of American Masters.

American Masters is made possible by the support of the National Endowment for the Arts and by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Additional funding for American Masters is provided by Rosalind P. Walter, The Blanche & Irving Laurie Foundation, Jack Rudin, Elizabeth Rosenthal in memory of Rolf W. Rosenthal, The André and Elizabeth Kertész Foundation, Michael & Helen Schaffer Foundation, and public television viewers.

  • PhiloK

    To feel the inspirational power Jim Morrison
    had on other performers ,in life &death
    read “Just Kids ” by Patti Smith.
    I hope PBS does a sidebar interview with
    her after she attends a screening {hint .Hint}

  • Greg Vadimsky

    As a lifelong resident of Melbourne, Florida – I’m hoping that this film really shows the true Doors for what they were – not what the major film tried to show. I’ve been trying to get the Melbourne city officials to recognize Jim’s birth here, and the house, which still stands at 2000 Vernon Place – a plaque or something??? – to no avail. Rock on boys!! – Can’t wait to buy the DVD of this film.

  • sandy

    i’m looking forward to seeing the doors on american masters. my sis and I just loved them. their music was so blusy, so beautiful, i still love it today. i went to jim morrison’s grave in 1972. the gravesite was covered with flowers. stuffed animals, bottle s of liquor, candles. he’s in a beautiful place. i could not believe how many people wanted to see his grave. my late husband toldm me that when he lived in melbourne, fla, in 1985, he passed jim morrison’s house every day. american masters does a great job on every subject they show. the doors should be a fascinating program.

  • Craig Weinstein

    It is pretty widely known that Morrison was born in Melbourne, FL. So was I and lived there for the first twenty-five years of my life, and then back again occasionally. As a kid and later as a teenager I remember everything from Zepplelin to The Beach Boys to The Doors on every oldies/rock station we had. Light My Fire is synonymous with Melbourne to me because it was played so much. The city ought to recognize the birth of one of the biggest (and weirdest, like the city itself) rock legends in history.

    I think the problem is that, for the most part, the entire area is being “beautified” and changed significantly from what it used to be up until the late 1990’s in order to better attract more affluent residents and make a better quality of life for new engineering talent hired by Harris, Grumann, JDS Uniphase, DRS Optronics, etc. as well as retirees and snowbirds. Honoring a rock god probably isn’t high on their priority list since it would take away from that appeal.

    Melbourne gave birth to Morrison and his very unique mind. There ought to be something mentioned about it in a historical register as a well as a plaque at his original home as Greg suggests.

  • Dogwalker

    I have the date circled.

  • Arlene Bowman

    I look forward to view the Doors documentary. I am an alumni of UCLA graduate film school, 86 where Jim Morrison and Ray Manzarek attended UCLA film school as well, except they graduated during the late 60’s. When I attended that school I didn’t know they attended the film school. Later on I found out. I first began to really like the Doors during 1967 the last year of high school. A girl from Cortez High School told me about their first album that had Light my Fire, which was a hit song that summer. That album was it: west coast rock and roll. I played it over and over again. It wasn’t until 2-3 years ago, when I took a real keen interest in the Doors. I had this curiosity to know how they started in the music business. I began to buy all their cds. I liked every cd. Not one bad cd. I never cared for the film made about the Doors by Stone. I can really hear and feel the filmmaker’s influence in some of their songs like “Riders in the Storm.” Great songwriters. Great group. I luv rock and roll music like them.

  • Tonya

    I can’t wait to see it since there will be no screening in Houston, Texas.

  • Jackie Rave

    Everything PBS does is first class !! This should be amazing !!!
    Marked it on my calendar already….

  • Jeremy Farmer

    It was hearing the Doors at the age of 12, in the early 90’s, that got me into scores of other music and literature I had never known of before. My idolization of Jim Morrison at that impressionable able did more for me than all of my Literature classes combined for years. I have been to his grave in Paris twice, and just can’t shake this obsession with the band. Needless to say, I will be there for the showing in Chicago.

  • kimmy bee

    when is the exact date of the airing on pbs? thank you.

  • I’m me

    Wednesday, May 12, 2010 at 9 p.m. (ET) on PBS

  • Tundra

    i walked into my little sisters room in the late 60’s drawn to the music on a cheap plastic turn table. “Where’d you get this music?” says I. ” Brother it’s the latest……The Doors”. she says; somberly, thoughtfully,mysteriously and if in a trance while Wild Child with its Shamanizing voice pleads out to its primitive beat.
    “Yea” I say. Needles to say I have been a huge Doors fan since. Between me and my sister we had all the six original vinlys and the vinyl double live al album..all gone to the winds of time now….
    I remember the day Jim died, (not the exact date) but 1971 when my sister showed up in black dress at high school. (my senior year). “What’s this dressing in black today for?” “Jim Morrison died today” says she.
    I am still riding the storm of The Doors on that last album.

  • allison

    im so excited and absolutely cannot wait!

  • ANNIE

    I own tee shirts,CDs,movie of “THE DOORS’ by Oliver Stone and every winter I go to the Library and read JIM MORRISON by the aurthor that wrote GARDEN of the GODS(about Led Zepplen)! I cann’t get enough of learning about the stories and people The Doors ra.n with and did !!! I want to read Jim’s poetry book and I would like to view some of Jim’smovie’s he made .

  • Highland Dan

    Fantastic, really looking forward to this, at last the artistic recognition they deserve apart from the sensationalism.

  • Melissa

    I cannot wait for the premiere of this documentary. I always been fascinated by the 1960’s particularly the late 60’s when it was a turbulent time, not only in the United States but worldwide. The Doors represented the change of convention and like many people in that time, they were pushing the envelope which just made them and that era even more fascinating to watch, read and study.

  • Smolley

    This is so fantastic.
    I dont think most people realize the history involving PBS / WNET / Channel 13(New York) in the history of The Doors.
    In April 1969,in NY, The Doors performed for a program on PBS/WNET/Ch.13 NY called ‘Critique’, in the studio with no audience present; it was a fascinating incredible performance.
    This happened right after the Miami incident which resulted in many shows being canceled and permits to perform being revoked.
    PBS/WNET/Ch.13 NY was the only venue offered to them at the time; it was a testament to the freedom of expression and a testament to The Doors as musical artists and one of the greatest American rock bands of all time.
    Thank you PBS, this is history revisited and a perfect example of what makes your broadcasting so special.

  • Rog Boz

    Saw the movie last week in the village…must see on TV…in comfort of home..thank you 13 ;-D

    PS: got that tape on the program Smolley mentioned above?

  • LindaRah Trenton,NJ

    I didn’t graduate from high school until 1969, but I still feel a part of the 60’s. I’ve already set my DVR to record!
    Thak you for airing this program.

  • Ernie Medeiros

    Regarding the quote, “if you remember the sixties, you weren’t there.” That comes from Grace Slick, an iconic and memorable performer in her own right. Unfortunately, she was also a drunken lush. I was there, I remember it all like it was yesterday. Probably, because I did pot and psychedelics, NOT booze. I wish that stupid and embarrassing quote would disappear from the “akashik record.”

  • rosc

    Gee another documentary about the dead drunk. What surprises could there be after 40 years? It’s not like they’re Rush :P

  • John Williamson

    It was 1967 and I was a junior at Lowell High School in southern California. The senior class had chosen to have a rock concert in the gymnasium instead of a day at Disneyland. On the bill was the “Young Rascals” and another group I’d never heard of … “The Doors.” While in the boys’ bathroom before the concert, a guy slowly walked in wearing black leather pants, a black leather jacket and hair like the mane of a lion. He looked around with eyes of steel and walked out. All of us boys looked at each other and wondered, “What was that? Who was that?” After the opening acts, “The Doors” took the stage and I realized the lead singer was none other than the strange individual who had walked into the bathroom … Jim Morrison. They performed all of their songs from the just released first album Light My Fire with stirring theatrics I’d never seen in a rock band. Morrison crawled on top of the amplifiers, clawing at the girls in the front row as if some animal just released from his cage and playing with his prey. The audience sat stunned. We couldn’t take our eyes off him. It was the most riveting concern I’ve ever seen before or since. I still have the high school flyer advertising the concert. Every time I look at it it reminds me that drugs stole one of the most charismatic rock stars the world has ever experienced. Thanks PBS for the documentary.

  • mickeytodd

    I know his appeal and the strong hold he had/has on the younger 15-25 year old people, at the time, who were amazingly drawn to him.
    I knew this through a wonderful girlfriend that shared my life in later years ( early nineties ).
    How he was/is loved!

  • Dragonfly

    This is genius! I’m so stoked about this! It’d be perfect if Johnny Depp were playing Jim Morrison. But he is only narrating it, which is perfect too. I can’t wait until this comes out on DVD!

  • mary from cincinnati

    I went to Paris in 1981 and visited Pere Lachaise Cemetary because a guidebook mentioned it was unique…I was not aware that this day was the 10th anniversary of Jim’s death….Thousands of Flowers and hundreds of people surrounded the sight…it was beautiful…singing, laughing, crying, holding hands….I have been back every time I visit Paris…..Jim is in a beautiful place indeed!

  • mary from cincinnati

    I visited Jim’s Grave at Pere Lachaise Cemetary in 1981 and was completely unaware that it was the 10th anniversary of his death….what a beautiful sight!!! Thousands of Flowers, hundreds of people, all the singing, laughing, crying and holding hands…it was a beautiful sight! I have been back everytime I visited Paris since, even on my honeymoon….Jim’s unforgettable!

  • gale herbold

    Val Kilmer should have gotten an Oscar for his performance of Jim. BUT NEVER IN GOOD OLD “HOLIER THAN THOU WOOD”

    GALE

  • Ashley cooper

    Ever since I was a little girl I have been in love w Jim Morrison, even though I’m only 24 ur never tobyong to experience the awesomeness of the greatest band I’ve ever had the joy of hearing, my mom got me started on the doors, and now my children 4 and 2 can’t get enough of them, I would play the entire album on my tummy and the one song my son kicked to was break on through and my son certainly broke through lol, I even have have jims face tatted on my arm, I have eveything to do w the doors! I will def b watching!!!!!!!!

  • mario morevo

    THE DOORS KICK ASS” ITS ROCK N’ ROLL POETRY”!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • mario moreno

    the DOORS movie is kick ass also but there is alot more to it…………………

  • Janet Innes

    Jim died a year after I was born, but as a teen growing up in the 80s I became fascinated with The Doors & have been ever since! (By the way, there were only 2 of us who were big-time Doors fans…Hey, it WAS the 80s! lol). Can’t wait to check this out! . . . Mr. Mojorisin still rocks!

  • Debbie Dorsey

    I am so excited by the prospect of seeing this doc. As a documentary editor and an avid fan of The Doors, I would have loved to have gotten a shot at editing this film. But, alas, not in the cards. I cannot tell you how happy I am that Mr. DiCillo took this project on. I’ve seen a lot of footage of The Doors through the years, know it well and will definitely be tuning in on May 12th. Congratulations to American Masters for brining this to PBS!

  • Tiwalove

    im commin Mojo Rising…

  • Sherry Jane Cooke

    I saw Jim and the Doors in Houston, as Jimmie Hendricks and Janice Joplin. My daughter lived in the bungaloes at AMDA, which was a place where Jim lived and still haunts. Room Number 5 was his favorite room, my daughter’s third roommate became wracked with drugs and alcohol and many sexual partners. They moved my daughter and her other roommate out, because they seemed to be immune to the spirits in that room — unfortunately, their third roommate was not and this was the third time in that room, that a student had severely changed to those ways. This third roommate has already been reprimanded and her parents notifiied. They are now closing down the bungaloes at AMDA so that students can no longer stay there. Why? Do they know that Jim haunts and destroys the lives of these unsuspecting students? I really am looking forward to this progaram!

  • William

    I hate that people scoth Oliver Stone. Even if it wasn`t 100% it still gave you a glimpse. Heck read the book bye Ray Manzerick it is hard to read. He likes to use big words. But I still like it.
    Even the movies about WoodStock are awesome. I was born in 1969. And glad I can clame the 60`s. Just wish I could have lived them. But that would mean I may have been at Vietnam.. Thanks PBS.

  • Mark Bottita

    Morrison died nearly 40 years ago, and yet here we are…still celebrating this timeless band. A true testament to their enduring legacy. I’ll be watching…

  • Seth Land Cincinnati, OH

    Did You Have A Good World When You Died?
    Enough To Base A Movie On?.

    I’m Getting Out Of Here
    Where Are You Going?
    To The Other Side Of Morning
    Please Don’t Chase The Clouds, Pagodas

    Long, long overdue. Can’t wait. All the American
    Masters programs are first class and will not disappoint.

    Thanks to all involved including Rob, Ray, John, and
    Jims estate.

    If you only knew how you continue to influence
    the youth of this country even today. I did not grow up during
    the times of the your music, but I couldn’t imagine growing
    up without it.

  • Simone

    Fantastic! I can’t wait! Thank you!!!!!

  • sharon pulinski west seneca ny

    I seen a Doors special on dvd it was awesome and some of the things about jim were crazy esp. the Indain story and his ride with his family when he was young… no wonder hes such an american poet

  • Scottie Church in Winder,Ga.

    i love the Doors and can’t wait to see them on American Masters. I grew up listening to them along with Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath and consider Jim Morrison the best song writer in history.

  • Mojo Durbin

    7 years, that’s all it took. From 1965 to 1971, nobody rocked like The Doors. No band has ever spoken to me, encouraged me to think for myself, like they did. There’ll never be another Jim. This is a fitting tribute.

    Attracting one of my generations greatest talents, Johnny Depp, to narrate this documentary is a perfect choice. As with his treatment of legendary writer Hunter S. Thompson, he’ll do The Doors justice, as will these accomplished filmmakers. Looking forward to a more thoughtful portrayal of them all. National Parks AND The Doors in one year…you rock, PBS! “Dance on fire as it intends.”

  • Running Man

    We saw the film a couple of weeks ago and it was very interesting. There’s footage that I’ve never seen before including scenes from Morrisons film HWY(amazingly restored) and concert footage from The Singer Bowl. This film is the real Doors unlike the fodder Oliver Stone directed.

  • DJ AMazon

    I’ve been living in Orlando for 3 years and never knew he was born in Melbourne. I finally have a real reason to go other than getting bit by a shark at the beach. Thanx for the info guys. Since im not going to Paris anytime soon his house would be a great second option for a pilramage since its only 45 mins away.

    When people speak of the greatest band in rock they’re always proclaiming “the Beatles, Zeppelin, The Stones”, but to me The Doors were the real deal. The statement “every question about the truths and myths of the times, about art and addiction, about authority and defiance – about alienation – were embodied in his persona” said it best.

    Truly a mythical band, no gimmick unlike some wannabe wizards from the 70’s we won’t mention.

  • Lon Hiller Kimmel

    You made my day….

  • MkeChap

    Ladies & gentlemen–
    from Los Angeles, California
    THE DOORS
    Looking forward to “When You’re Strange”
    Oliver Stone’s movie was a mixed bag
    I saw the Doors live at Hollywood Bowl & L.A. Forum & Aquarius
    “Tomorrow we enter the town of my birth,
    I want to be ready.”

  • logan fortune rocky hill,ct

    “Break on Through” has been my motto for years.Grew up in Hotlanta in the 60’s and have been a major fan and feel my life has been influenced by the great music that came from those years.The doors deserve every accolode that comes there way.Killer music!

  • ZENA WELK

    Can hardly wait to see it. Being from that era, had seen the Doors live and followed them throughout. Was backstage with the Doors 21st Century with Ian Astbury (who I thought had the Jim aura) with a few chosen others when they gigged at concert in Michigan at what I still call Pine Nob, n/k/a DTE Energy Theatre. Could not afford to make the trips to Paris but was there “in spirit” each time. My only wish is that Jim was with us today.

  • Tom Provo, UT

    Since the first time I beheld the doors at a concert at an amusement park called LAGOON, some 20 minutes north of Salt Lake City, I was taken in by the doors. It was May 1967, Jim and the doors were not yet too famous. He was the sober poet, clean and crisp of voice. He was the only singer who could scream in tune. There was something scary about him, almost devilish but also angelic at the same time. The voice was like no other voice in Rock, the best there ever was. I was lucky to get a few autographs from Jim Morrison that night after the concert while he walked amongst the crowd like it was not big deal to be who he was. He was a gentleman. I’ve been to Florida where he was born. Been to his flat where he died and his grave twice. There was always a giant crowd of fans. There was something about Jim and the music of the doors that will not soon to be forgotten. I drove through a blizzard to Park City, Utah to see the premiere at the Sundance Film Festival. It was certainly worth it, a must to see. If it doesn’t make you cry for the loss our Mr. Mojo, then something is wrong. It is truly a fantastic documentary about a group that was way ahead of its time.

  • ray

    its good to see THE DOORS being givin some air time on pbs! MORRISON LIVES!!!!!!!

  • STL BLUES

    Thank you Mr. Depp for your talented and professional contribution to this outstanding film production and thank you WNET 13…………………….again !!

  • Donna Tucker

    Thank you for some intelligent programing that does not just focus on the negative things in Jim’s life and artistry. The Doors deserve to also be taken seriously as creative, talented artists. I do remember the 60’s. The Doors were and still are my absolute favorite. They did great things beyond just Light My Fire. Appreciate you developing this project.

  • Paula DeMarta Mastroianni

    Jim Morrison & The Doors (of Perception) had a profound influence on my generation in the relatively short time they were together. When the full (long) version of “Light My Fire” (summer of ‘67) was played by WNEW-FM in NYC, it was the most electrifying song of the year. And I still feel that same thrill today when I hear the unmistakable opening notes. I loved when Morrison defied Ed Sullivan and sang “higher” despite his promise that he wouldn’t. Unlike the Rolling Stones, who changed “Let’s Spend The Night Together” to “some time together,” Morrison refused to compromise. After the show, one of the producers told Jim “You’ll never be on this show again.” Replied JM, “We just were.” Genius-genius-genius, finally recognized, long overdue!

  • Nathaniel

    Long term Doors fan. This film Finally does the band justice… know fake-hollywood stuff… this is the real deal, as much of it as they got on film anyway. I saw it on opening night here in LA, Loved it. Can’t wait to see it again with family and friends.

  • Pamela Vaughan

    Can’t wait to watch this!!!! I have been a Door’s fan since I was about 13 years old. I think it’s great Johnny Depp is narrating it also.

  • voodoochild

    i’m so looking forward to this,to see things from the beginning,and narrated by johhny depp,i think they should have got val kilmer,since he played him well in the movie.its gonna be a gr8 show!!!

  • BAL

    I just happened to back into the promo for this program last night on my local PBS station. I double-checked against the local TV listing this morning and then came to this website and read the synopsis and watched the interviews. I read the responses. (Every one. I liked them all.) I had no idea that this program was on the horizon. It brought it all flooding back. I came of age w/ the Doors. I was at that very right age when “Light My Fire” first hit the charts like a locomotive train in that very grand Summer of ‘67. You were hooked by the voice. And then, you realized that it was only a top-40 truncated version. Then you heard the LP long version and then you were really hooked (especially by the lyrics). Then you stayed connected as the other LPs came out (Strange Days, Waiting for the Sun, Soft Parade, Morrison Hotel, L.A. Woman, and Absolutely Live inbetween and among). You knew (at the time) that it wouldn’t last because it couldn’t last. Prophets like Cassandra are both blessed and cursed. The issue was that, back then, we couldn’t extrapolate ourselves into the future. Our troubadors, who were also are clarions, understood this more keenly than the rest of us (Morrison, Joplin, Hendrix, and beyond). They just couldn’t get beyond the “now” that was the “then” of Viet Nam, Iron Curtain, Bamboo Curtain, Berlin Wall, Civil Rights, Environment and Ecology, etc. But somehow, we did. With the help of our musicians.

  • Tony Funches

    Haven’t seen it yet, I’ll say what I observe after I have … according to popular rumor, I allegedly pop up in some background shots … of all the groups I worked for & with, I especially LOVED The Doors as a Feast Of Friends … more later AFTER I see the film.

  • montyb

    Looking forward to it…I’m ready to….”break on through to the other side”…

  • Julianne Ziefle

    Wow, glad I saw this… got the date circled as I saw above no screening in Houston. Should be very interesting. Even more so for those generations after

  • Stormrider

    I had the amazing good fortune to meet the Doors after their last concert in Cleveland, shortly before Jim’s infamous trial in Miami. The stress between him and the band at that point was very evident, but Jim – at least on that night – was not the Morrison that has been memorialized in print and on-screen. His charisma in person was something that cannot be described. It’s so sad that so many depictions of him have barely touched upon the Morrison that existed between the lines, but chose to focus exclusively on the negative aspects of his behavior. Who among us would want to be remembered for all eternity only for the things we did in an alcohol or chemically-induced stupor when we were in our 20’s? (Not me, for sure!)

  • Tanner

    So what’s the difference between the movie that has been shown in various cities for the past few months and this PBS broadcast? This is the same thing, right?

  • big fan from ALA

    I was BORN in 1967, for crying out loud, but feel so sympatico with the Doors, that I HATE the fact that I MISSED them, by a whole lifetime!!

    Bad timing, for ME, in my opinion!!! I wish I could go back in time, and be 20 yrs. old, when they were, and see them live…..If only……….

    I already think in terms of symbolism, philosophy, thinking for myself, and am very musically oriented. So, I feel like I’m getting to commune with people of my own kind, when I watch them on video.

    I got all of their albums when I was 14 and, loved them, instantly!! Then purchased a video when I was 16. And, loved it, instantly, too. I now have it, on dvd. I watch it, sometimes, daily and weekly.

    Both musically and lyrically (and on video), I “got them”/ understood them, instantly, and felt they are the way things should be. They seem “right”, normal to me. (Not weird or odd.) I feel sorry for people who don’t understand them. They can’t be explained to those kind of people.

    They are my church. They cause the church within me, to to come to the surface. They inspire me to “dance compose” to their videos. I spent my entire birthday night, “dance composing” into the wee hours of the night to their video.

    Ray, John, Robbie, if you are reading this, please know how much your music means to me, and how much you as entities, mean to me!!!!!!! You make me very happy!!! Your music makes me very happy!!! Every single time I listen ( or watch), it is like the very first time, always fresh and delightful!!!!!

  • John Brender

    This was just screened at a small theater in Chicago for only one week and I couldn’t make it….so I was just going to wait for the DVD release.
    I ‘m a Music fan and listen to a lot of different types of rock/metal/punk/alternative bands from era to era and have had my favorites from time to time….which never really lasted….except for The Doors…….It’s impossible to get tired of thier music. Anyone who claims The Doors had no impact on almost everything that came after them (Especially the Seattle/Alternative movement of the 90’s) just doesn’t know music period…. and should go on listening to the next canned pop musical flavor of the day. Doors fans: If you already haven’t done so, get the live performances that have been released over the past few years. My favorites are The Aquarius (2nd Performance) and the Boston Concert. “JB” Chicago

  • gary mahon

    some are born to sweet delight, some are born to the endless night. that’s why we should always ‘’specialize in having fun.”

  • Rose Raff

    I TOO LIVE IN THE MELBOURNE AREA OF THE GREAT FLORIDA. I JUST WENT TO DOWNTOWN MELBOURNE TODAY TO SEE THE HOUSE THAT EVERYONE STILL SAYS STANDS, BUT TO NO AVAIL THERE IS NO SUCH ADDRESS OF 2000 VERNON PL, IN DOWNTOWN MELBOURNE. THE NUMBERS START AT 2001 AND GO UP FROM THERE. IF ANYONE KNOWS THE EXACT ADDRESS PLEASE LET ME KNOW SO I CAN TAKE A PICTURE AND POST IT TO SHARE WITH ALL MY MORRISON FRIENDS!!

  • Brian Davis

    What channel is this on if you have Directv?

  • mara

    Can’t wait to see this special program. I just loved them. Anything to do with The Doors I’ll watch. I looking forward. Love their music. They rock!!!!!

  • Rie Chan

    Dammnit I’m going to be at work when this airs!!! Noooo!!! Huge Doors fan forever!!!!

  • Barbie Sims

    You know that the Doors is what wE ARE MADEOF, AND Jim M knows that We feel all the love , Barbie, ps We will always love you 1954 puppy

  • Lee Ann

    I love the part in the preview when the bandmembers all introduce themselves, and Morrison simply says his name is ‘Jim’. That is so absolutely cool. I will always be a fan of the Doors, particularly Jim Morrison. He was a poet, and there will never be another performer like him.

  • BW

    I saw the film on the weekend it opened in the theater. For newbies it is a great film, for long time Doors/ Jim fans it is nothing new( but still amazing). But…there are a few new photos and a surprise at the end! The HWY footage is amazing, crisp and clear, it is almost like Jim Morrison is here in 2010 on the big screen.

    I have been to where it all began in Venice Beach to where it all ended in Paris, France. Jim Morrison’s talent has always been undermined by his death and circumstances surrounding it. But his poetry and music lives on. He truly is a musical legend.

  • Dutra

    Yup! I saw James perform live on stage. He was drunk both times. The supporting acts were much better; BB King, Linda Ronstadt, Flying Burrito Brothers, Quicksilver.

  • Marietta Coleman

    A wonderful exciting movie was created with the original film footage that was shot and preserved by a talented cameraman and photographer Paul Ferrara. It is because of his exciting camera work and intimate knowledge of the Doors that has made this movie possible. The creativity of Tom Di Cillo Director and writer of this this film brought to life the raw footage of this film. Kudos to all that were involved in bringing this to us to enjoy!

  • Tina

    All our lives
    we sweat and save
    Building for a shallow grave
    Must be something else we say
    Somehow, to defend this place…

    Although I am a little older and a lot more busy in life than when I was 17 (i.e. I don’t wear the records out like I did then), I still hold Jim Morrison as one of the major influences on my life overall. Because The Doors music fascinated me, Morrison fascinated me, and because he fascinated me, I wanted to emulate him. Not in the negative ways, though I know the excess he’s known for helped make him the spectacular figure that he was ultimately, but in the positive ones: his perceptiveness (as in the lyrics above), his witty turns of phrases, his voracious appetite for books (the rocker stereotypes that get flipped on the script with that alone!), his quest for the truth, his ferocity. All those things I wanted to emulate as a teen–and I still do.

    As far as the music goes, all I have to do is hear it and it all comes back in a nanosecond. Those songs stand the test of time because they were crafted by four amazingly talented, sensitive musicians who each had something to bring to the table in the turbulent times in which they walked. The result is magic a million times over. And very few of those songs have a bad note in them–even the ones I don’t care for as much. How many other bands can that be said about, lol?

    Cheers for the documentary. More than ever, it seems, the world needs voices like Morrison’s and Co. to bring us back to the nitty-gritty, if only a little. I look forward to whatever the program has to offer.

  • Maggie

    The Doors on the Ed Sullivan Show was my first real rock’ n’ roll experience. I haven’t been the same since. I can’t wait to see this documentary. I remember Jim Morrison whenever I’m in downtown Clearwater, FL where he used to live with his grandparents.

  • Skye

    YEAAAHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Tim Whartenby from Philly pa

    It’s been said a million times before , but I will say it again. Best Singer/songwriter/poet/politician/assassin! The DOORS the first american band to sell 7 consecutive Gold albums in 5 years AMAZING TRULY AHEAD OF THEIR TIME! …. yeah I said it Albums. My personal favorite voice besides another great singer Layne Staley, but the things Jim said and did were way ahead of his time. I have just about every taped conversation I could find that’s ever been taped of Jim …..and when he spoke about the future of music where he could see one man bands where a person would have electronic instruments and voice to see it all happen in his mind back in the 60’s and have it happen in the late 80’s 90’s . It’s quite evident the man was/ is a GENIOUS! THE DOORS MR MO JO RISIN. I’m PSYCHED! Having Johnny Depp will be great as well as narrator!!!

  • Bruce Higgins

    “Is everybody in?” “The ceremony’s about to begin.” – Mr. Mojo Risen

  • Carmen

    Glad their gettin more recognition! I think kids especially now need to be exposed to groups like The Doors instead of the shit thats your hearing now. I’m 25 and have known about The Doors the majority of my life. Anyway I shall be watching!

  • Jac

    The doors were an ok band , Pink Floyd needs a tuned up documentary

  • steve booth

    hey! maybe if we all showed up on his birthday or on july 4th in melbourne they’d understand he’s an icon…we should totally do this!

  • Eddie

    Let’s not get crazy. “The Doors” were great. Morrison was a key part of The Doors but he was also a bit nuts, but sometimes nuttiness and creativity go hand in hand.

    As they say, the whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

    Back in the 1990’s I was lucky enough to see Ray Manzarek at Lounge Ax in Chicago. Ray was a good guy sitting on the edge of the stage talking to people.

    I also have been to Morrisons gravesite in Paris. Any Doors fan should make the pilgrimage too. I was there in 1994? and have 8 minutes of video of the site and the visitors. I plan on posting it on Youtube.

    I’m looking forward to tonights showing.

  • Andrew Henczak

    Absolutely love their music and have all the original 5 albums: THE DOORS, STRANGE DAYS, WAITING FOR THE SUN, MORRISON HOTEL, ABSOLUTELY LIVE and LA WOMAN. Not only did Jim Morrison write wonderful songs, had a great voice, but also created a stage presence like no other. The kind that comes around once in a generation or longer.

  • irina sanchez acosta

    Irina
    mira que chevre este video cuando estaba vivo el chico

  • Kelley

    I can’t wait to see this movie. I wanted to watch it in theaters but it never came out anywhere near me. Jim is my god..“I think of myself as an intelligent, sensitive human being with the soul of a clown which always forces me to blow it at the most important moments.”~Jim Morrison…I love you Jim!!! ♥

  • David

    I saw this premiere at Sundance last year and was sitting a few rows behind Robbie, Ray and Dorothy and 6-7 seats across from John who was with Perry Farrell. Sting and his wife Trudie were behind me. Oh man, so surreal! Definitely can’t wait to watch this again tonight with the addition of Johnny Depp’s voice. Awesome!

  • Joe Dennis

    The Doors. The Doors of Perception. The Voice of Perfection. Jim Morrison, ancient yet child-like. The band, creator of weird crazy rock and blues backing the beautiful, secret, evocative lyrics. “The End” and “When the Music’s Over” continue to blow my mind with their insane power. I do not think there is a better band, and I am certain Jim Morrison had THE great rock voice. I have rather morbidly listened to The Doors over and over again for about a month, not to prep for the PBS special, but just because the voice, the lyrics, the rawness of the whole sound kept drawing me in. I don’t believe in “God”, but I hope some part of Jim Morrison, poet, artist, great rock singer, survives. He was doing the primal scream thing long before Lennon, and I love him too. But Morrison was a strange, perverse, magical creature, without equal. God knows he had physical beauty and power, just ask all the little girls who fell in love with him. Of course I’m jealous.

  • Olivia Newtron Bomb

    I am in love wity Jim Morrison..have been and always will be….thats all I wanted to say….Oh and he is so sexy isnt he?

  • Becca

    I cannot wait..born the day we lost Mamma Cass Elliot , 7/29/74, but had a fascination with the Doors and Jim since I was about 12, so around 25 years now. In Arizona, hope I get this on the tele..no cable. So if it is 9pm ET , that is 12 am my time..I am 3 hrs ahead, I believe, MST…anyone know? Peace and RIP Jim and Pam..I envy all of you who got to see him. My boyfriend did and hung with Janis after he got out of Nam, which he almost didnt make it back..thank the Lord he did…xx

  • Tom Basso

    cant wait it is the night of of the show it is 8:48 p.m. sitting here waiting cant wait feel like a kid at 42

  • Rock Singer

    Hey …I cooked dinner for the Door’s back in the day at the “Black Rabbit Inn” in WeHo

    Peace & Love Peace & Love
    RS

  • Valerie

    Why is there no “interview with Jim” posted???
    PBS posted interviews with the other three band members.
    ;o)

  • Mike

    Andrew, don’t forget “The Soft Parade!”

  • Rita

    Was put together wonderfully. Wish they would’ve shown a little bit on his life before becoming famous. The 1991 movie on “The Doors” showed how he believed he had a spirit of a dead Indian Shaman enter his body. Intelligent, creative but unfortunately self destructive ! Wish things wouldn’t have ended like this…

  • moonlightdriver

    I’ve been looking forward to this for so long!

    Getting a cold beverage ready in honor of Jim.

    Here we go Doors fans…Jim lives!

  • Ean W. Morton

    Just saw the movie on pbs it was well done even having J. Depp narrate it was a good idea. They are still dropping hints that he is still among us? Who knows Mr Mojo Risen is still here!!! Canadian Doors Fan

  • Marina Waddingham

    I just saw the documentry on “The Doors” tastful, truthful and very well done, just as I remember them and their music in the 60’s They are STILL the best ROCK band! No one can touch them or their message!!!
    We still have time to be the world Jim wanted us to be!!!
    John is my hero his drumming beats ALL other drummers that ever THOUGHT they could pound out a beat!!! A life long Doors fan!!!

  • Kerry

    There are things known and unknown, and in between are the Doors.

  • Alejandro

    It was the best documentary that I ever see about Jim Morrison and the Doors….I just wanna said Thank you PBS!!!!

  • Zen Love

    Wow! Absolutely amazing! We love you Jim. The Doors are one of the most amazing bands of all time. Thank you Raymond, John, Robbie, and James. Thank you Paul and Pam. I am so thankful and grateful to know and (as much as I can) understand this beautiful and wonderful music. It is art. It is eloquent. As many times as I have listened to the songs and the poetry, it still feels like the first time. Very intense. Very moving. Very powerful. Wow!

  • Bradford Rand

    PBS – thank you so much for making this film available for everyone. The Doors music, if listened to closely is so deep, moving, threatening, inspiring, frightening it touches upon nearly every human sense. Jim (and the band) was truly a daring, yet at times reclusive rock pioneer whose music, thankfully will live in eternity. It inspired me so much that I started my own tribute band, playing a few times a year called Feast of Friends; we have a few videos on youtube and let me tell you, when performing the Doors music live, it takes you to another world… sincerely breaking on through to the other side. Rest in peace Jim, and to the rest of the band that still plays – Ray, Bobby and the replacement drummer Ty – keep rocking until you die. To Johnny Depp – you did a great job on the film – as expected – and as a matter of fact, our Doors tribute band just played the Viper Room in January – we killed it. I think Jim & and the band would be proud. PBS – you rock too !

  • Leslie

    Amazing documentary. A must see for the true Doors fan..Jim is mesmerizing.

  • GRRS

    We were fortunate to see The Doors live in Pittsburgh Civic Arena in May 1970.To be honest,the first half of the concert SUCKED!!! The Doors were lethargic and it seemed like they were just going through the motions.Morrison was pissed off because the Fire Marshall wasn’t going to let the concert go on because people were sitting in the aisle. The show finally went on. The Blues Image played first. Remember “Ride Captain Ride?” I went out to have a smoke and while I was out there I had three offers to buy some smoke and about three offers to sell. Well, The Doors came out ,the place went nuts but the music didn’t match the expectations of the crowd.That all changed about halfway through the concert. Morrison asked the crowd” Does anybody have a cigarette?”The stage was inundated with cigarettes.Morrison walked the stage kicking at the cigarettes then walked up to the mic and said” Mentholated preferred” Another barrage of smokes came flying up on the stage.Once again he kicked at the smokes,picked one up and returned to the mic asking” Does anybody have a light?” Matches and lighters came flying up on the stage.He picked one up,lit the cigarette, in defiance of the Fire Marshall and said ‘The police motto is “To Protect and Serve”. They’re our servants,aren’t they. The place went nuts.They started playing again.They totally KICKED ASS.j

  • juanito verret

    “You can’t burn out if you’re not on fire”

  • grumpy

    awesome special. Jim Morrison playing Val Kilmer as Jim Morrison ….

  • arlyn

    The music of tne Doors is timeless. It never gets old.
    When You`re Strange is excellent. It is also sad to watch him self distruck.
    I have listened to their music since they hit the radio waves.
    May their music live on forever.

  • paul phillips

    I just watched the movie on PBS and it brought back a lot of memories of the sixties and early seventies. It is sad about Jim’s short life. I hope he found peace. Addictions have taken the lives of a lot of the great artist of our time.

  • fan of jim morrison latino armando philly mid twenties.

    i have it tune in right now thanx for this on facebook just sent a tex of it to my friend who show me. put me on this great band the DOORS rip jim way too young he die IMO very talented crazy loco at times but hey who isn’t as a music icon or musician sad RIP

    my friend sha-’kaarii bella melendez got me into such great songs by them she know em all…but not born until early seventies..

    from a fan…. three minutes till show tim.

  • Jenny A

    i didnt get a chance to record it tonite. does anyone know when they will replay it?? thanx :)

  • Jewel

    The Doors movie with Val Kilmer was offensive sensationalization. Anyone who thinks it deserved an Oscar or that it was great has been seriously misled. Too many exaggerations and false information – I was glad to see this documentary with genuine footage and filled with their music.

  • Big dan

    saw the Doors perform live in Detroit at Cobo , opening act was The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, it was right after the incident in Miami, and the stage was loaded with Police just waiting for Jim to do something that they could arrest him for, He didn’t :), GREAT show!!! but a bit subdued for that period of Doors live shows , still etche3d in my mind oh so many years later , still can remember how excited we would get when CKLW radio in Windsor Ontario would play the extended version of Light My Fire on A M radio , you couldn’t tell till they hit a certain chord riff if it was the extended or regular version very few radio stations would play it, :(
    Growing up in the 60s was beyond amazing also msade it to WoodStock for 5 days , and Goose Lake Michigan for 4 days , we lived for live music and new fredoms of expression and experimentation of all kinds , We could really use another period like that in this country , minus The War, and assinations of Kennedy’s and MLK , Kent State and civil rioting , and the Deocratic National convention in Chicago , , Love , Peace and happiness to all , Dan Jankowski Maumee, Ohio

  • Dean Berry

    I was born in 1960. my first recallation of the Doors was in the summer of 1968, my family was on vacation headed to colarado when the song lite my fire came on the radio, before the song was over I heard my mom tell my dad( I wish his baby would hurry up and lite his fire) Ive been a Doors fan every since.

  • Rita

    I think we all idiolize Jim Morrison because he was such a unique invididual–yes, not quite normal because he was such a tortured soul -but talented, outrageously handsome, and a near genious who died too young.

    We grieve for him but also for our loss because he is no longer with us.

  • Trevor Johnston

    “Ride the snake. To the lake. The ancient lake”
    Slip under tepid French bathtub water to your immortal reward.

  • Stephen

    This video is one of the best ever on TV. It captures the music and images and emotion of the Doors and the 60’s. A good tribute to a great group of the turbulent 60’s Hope to see it many times,,,

  • sherwood

    What a wonderful film- thank you Tom DiCillo. The editing was so exciting, it was hard to imagine it was original footage from the seventies and sixties.I have never felt the weight of the injustice of the accusation so strongly before, nor felt that I knew who the rest of the band was and what they were experiencing. DiCillo is much missed from making imaginative films, and the clarity he brings to Jim Morrison and the Doors, adds to the magic.
    It is brilliant documentaries like this that make PBS so special.

  • Christine

    Just finished watching. I was transfixed. Depp was the perfect narrator, and I enjoyed the entire production. There will never be another Morrison.

  • Christopher

    Jim Morrison and the Doors were light years ahead of anyone of this time period. When you listen to the long version of “Light My Fire” this song transcended into a new realm of music never heard before. The best way for me to get into the music is to put on the original album, turn off the lights and get into the sweet spot between the speakers and “crank it up”. “Light My Fire” will take you to a place you have never been. I have all the albums and they are as nice as the day I bought them, and there is no sound like vinyl when you compare it to the CD that I also have. One Friday night in Oxnard CA while cruising A Street, “Light My Fire” came on the radio. It was like time stopped and all over the cruise you could hear the song being played as if it was a giant concert. Totally mesmerizing. Jim Morrison and the Doors were pure genius and for a short time, but will forever live on in history as one of the best bands of all time.

  • Gary Brooks

    I bought their first album, back in the summer of 1967, at an Eckerd’s Drugstore in Orlando, Florida. The price of the album? A mere $0.99! I still have it, although I just about wore it out, playing it over & over through the years. In 1968, I was in my first year of college at the University of Florida. Didn’t own a car or bike, so I had to walk everywhere on campus. One afternoon, coming back from class, I took a shortcut down thru the girl’s dorms, between the buildings. This was long before they had AC in the dorms, so all the windows were open. The effect of hearing Light My Fire when it came on the radio was a unique experience – seems like every room in all the dorms had their radios on and everyone turned the volume up when the song came on the air. The effect was like walking between 2 monstrous speakers, playing full blast. An unforgettable experience. In 1979-81, I lived in Merritt Island, Florida, and I, too, used to drive by his house in Melbourne whenever I had the chance.

    Dionysus – “He was the god of fertility and wine, later considered a patron of the arts. He invented wine and spread the art of tending grapes. He has a dual nature. On the one hand bringing joy and devine ecstasy. On the other brutal, unthinking, rage. Thus, reflecting both sides of wines nature. If he choses Dionysus can drive a man mad. No normal fetters can hold him or his followers” = Jim Morrison

  • McK

    AWESOME doc. Truely amazing. One of the best documentaries I’ve EVER seen.

    Everything was perfect. I’d love to have it on DVD.

  • jay agojo

    I was in high school when i first heard their music and i enjoyed it. While everyone was listening to fra lipo ,duran duran and michael jackson i was only interested in just one band THE DOORS. Even if every member of the band came in with different influences in music, still they brought us and still bringing us great rock n roll music. Your still my favorite. “NO ONE COMES OUT OF HERE ALIVE”….mr mojo risin

  • JAH

    While I was looking forward to this American Masters episode, I was somewhat guarded in my hopes. Such proved to be a valid approach as this production — which appeared to feature previously unseen footage (such was never made clear) — did nothing that hasn’t been done before with respect to The Doors. Curiously, the film maker — Tom Dicillo — elected to focus on Morrison’s “enigmatic” personality while reinforcing Morrison’s “mystique”. Fact is, while The Doors were certainly noteworthy in terms of their oeuvre — in particular “Morrison Hotel” and “LA Woman”, their front-man was essentially a self indulgent a**hole offering really nothing more than a compelling stage presence that was eventually replaced with self-importance and pretension. Morrison’s selfishness doomed a band of professionals in their craft. Whatever… I found the episode interesting but ultimately l was left with a feeling of needing a shower.

  • Larry Orenich

    Where can I purchase this great film?

  • Deej Webb

    Odd that there was no reference to the fact Jim probably died of a heroin overdose. I wonder if it has to do with the fact the family may not have cooperated if that was included…but egregious that this wasn’t even mentioned…

  • Bob S. – Class of ‘71

    I was thrilled to catch the Doors documentary last night. I grew up with their intoxicating, timeless music.

    We all miss Jim and what the future of the Band would have been if he was still with us. Ray, Robby, and John are Rock Icons that have carried on the Legend of the Doors and should be extremely proud of their contributions.

    I’m lucky to have been able to enjoy the Doors from their beginning.

    Where would we all be without “Light My Fire” ???

    Fan Bob

  • Beyond 27

    Woke up this morning.At my door stands my wild child,3am and 3 years old.I could not get back to la la land if i tried. Sitting in my angry chair,the Time Vacum fillinng in the void.The usual early morning saviours WANT MONEY,i have none.

    Fate or luck,now 4am a pbs program takes me back to where I once belonged,or so i wished. Heavely influenced we all were and still are.Hypnotic and transforming ,the doors as a whole have opened up my musical blues envelope. Muddy waters,Coltrane ,BuddyGuy,JohnLeeHooker etc.

    THANK YOU DOORS.

    ps. IS EVERYBODY IN

  • Donna

    Thank you, PBS for showing this film. For those of us not in LA or New York, we would not have been able to see this without PBS. The Doors were and remain American Masters for sure. This was a fantastic portrayal of an extraordinary group. I especially loved the way Morrison’s film, “HWY” was woven throughout the entire documentary, and that the original film was cleaned up so well. When telling the story of Jim Morrison, it is going to naturally be sad, but doesn’t need to be maudlin, and this film definitely wasn’t – the last line of the whole program showed that! If you care at all about The Doors, this is a must see. And again to PBS, a million thank you’s.

  • andy schwertman

    The doors was the best rock group for the 1960s to ever come out of los angeles it’s a shame that Jim morrison died so young when i first began listening to their music in 1990 i thought that their music was the best and now i’m 23 years old i still listen to their music when i stared listening to their music after i had heard the music i cried when i heard about jim morrison’s death

  • Jennifield

    I watched When You’re Strange last night. I was colossally disappointed. I was really hoping for an objective, complex treatment of an interesting rock band that made great music during a transformational era–a postmodern look at a psychedelic slice of mid-Twentieth century art. What I got was more of the same old, same old simple-minded Morrison worship. Jim the clown, Jim the wounded poet, Jim the fractured personality. Yes, Jim was gorgeous, intelligent and ultra charismatic (like lots of rock stars), but the narration was full of poetic platitudes that didn’t provide real insight or particularly enlightening hindsight, for that matter. “Did Jim revel in the limelight…was he truly himself when interacting with fans and on stage? Was he comfortable with his art?” Hmm…maybe not. Maybe that’s why he stoned himself into non-functionality for almost the entire time he was a rock star. Oy.

    The video clips were the fascinating part of this film and I am truly grateful for the chance to have seen them, but most of the concert footage drives home the point that there’s nothing particularly romantic or profound about Jim the drunken rock-and-roll star. Okay, maybe there’s a touch of tragedy in the concept of missed chances–if Jim hadn’t been falling down stupid for all those years, if he hadn’t drugged himself to death, what could he have accomplished? Dunno. Moot point. For me, what’s romantic and profound is the music The Doors made together. I think this film typically went overboard on the probing of Jim’s questionable depths and neglected to say anything new about the band and its place in history.

  • Kevin Nolan of Memphis

    Saw the film for the first time last evening… What a treat. Very enjoyable. Not much new information passed on via the film but a solid work none the less. Long live the Doors!

  • mike

    ..What a great job PBS did with the doors. It was very powerful and moving.
    I always thought the sound of the doors was uniquely original. Jim
    didn’t sing like Mick Jagger or try to sound like James Brown etc. He
    sounded more like a letcherous Vegas lounge singer. Dean Martin vibe.
    Ray Manzarek’s keyboard was also strange. Most daytime soap operas
    at this time used the same organ sound/tone he used. Throw in
    Jazz tempo time changes on drums and you got a stew that hasn’t
    happened again. Art! Couldn’t happen today with the music industry.
    Teen burlesque, processed sound , The Doors were american!

  • ArvisDoors

    From what I saw, I missed the first half, it is an excellent documentary, can’t wait to buy the DVD!
    The original footage of The Doors makes the documentary that much more fascinating.
    I’m a huge Doors fan, so much that my daughter has JAMES for a middle name. :)

  • Nomz

    Missed it! When will it air again? Cant find that info anywhere!

  • Detroit Al

    Who was the actor playing Morrison? The one who was driving around in the Mustang? Looked just like him!

  • Susan

    I saw this last night and remembered why I loved this band in high school (in the late 70s/early 80s) and still love it today. I got my son to watch the documentary with me. He didn’t get all of it but after it was over I explained to him that the reason I always liked the band was because I always felt Morrison was channeling something deeper than himself with his words. I still think that. The Doors are the real deal and the perfect interpreter of the times. I was just a kid, but I still remember hearing the music and seeing the band on TV. I met an old hippie at a former job and asked her what she thought of the Doors when the band came out and she said, “It blew my mind. I had never heard anything like them.” Well, 20 years later, the first time I heard them, I felt the exact same way. I hope younger people find the same magic listening to them that I did.

  • jen

    will this be replayed???? I missed it : (

  • beatnikdaddio

    “Who was the actor playing Morrison? The one who was driving around in the Mustang? Looked just like him!”

    that wasnt an “actor” playing jim morrison, that WAS jim morrison. that was parts of jim’s film HWY. that was jim’s own shelby mustang too.

  • Toni

    The best TV I’ve watched in year.

  • Demetrio

    Missed it! When will it air again? Cant find that info anywhere!

  • Arlene Bowman

    “When You’re Strange” documentary aired last night on PBS American Masters. I liked it half and half. Mostly what I liked about it: was the archival footage shot of the Doors from television sources, other filmmakers’ documentaries and Morrison’s film called The Highway. Certain parts of “When You’re Strange” documentary were skimmed over, too generalized such as his death. I will have to agree with Randy Lewis, an LA Times reviewer. Generally he said, the audience did not find out who Jim Morrison really was about as a person.

    For me a lot of the archival footage was unseen footage, which I liked. I have not viewed every single documentary about the Doors due to costs to purchase. I have checked out mostly all the dvds related to James Morrison and the Doors from the local libraries to view. I read a majority of the books and dvd book voice overs created about them. At sixteen in the Spring of 1967 I was struck by the Door’s music when I first heard them. I knew a female student at Cortez High who recommended I hear them so I went to buy Light My Fire album, their first album. She was right on. Morrison and the Doors songs reminded me about dreams and San Francisco. I wore the album’s grooves out. One of my dreams was to live in San Francisco, Ca., which eventually happened in 71-74 and then twelve years later in the Fall 1979, I entered UCLA graduate film school in Los Angeles, the same department and alma mater Morrison and Manzarek graduated from. Only in the last three years have I become infatuated again with the Doors music and their lives: how did they become musicians and singers. How did it happen in LA? What was LA like then? Actually in the last seven years I read many biographical and auto biographical books about the sixties and early seventies rock and roll groups. Few books are available about women rock and rollers or singers/songwriters. Thus far, Janis Ian’s auto biography is the only autobiography about a female singer/songwriter I really like. She wrote “Society’s Child” song.

    Why I like the Doors? I identified with Morrison and the rest of the Doors. Points for the Doors, that the Doors did not release any cds I seriously disliked. I observe and compare the the music of the sixties and early seventies with today’s music. The sixties and early 70’s broke ground about topics to present in songs such as sex, anti-war, people of color issues, women and other social messages. Also, I was apart of the young people who were apart of the counter culture as it was called. The interests of the counter culture included naturally rock and roll, blues, rhythm and blues, soul and country music. I liked everything that happened: women’s movement, people of colors’ movements such as Native American, Afro-American, Asian, Mexican called Chicano, Puerto Rican and gay movements all exploded at once. There were college strikes like at San Francisco State and Columbia University in New York. The Native Americans at UCLA protested to establish a Native American studies at UCLA as well as other colleges which followed the same path. This is why today’s U.S. universities have an American Indian Studies. American soldiers became draft dodgers of the Vietnam War and fled to Canada. A lot lived at Long Beach on Vancouver Island. The first Earth Day was created in 1970. When I attended Cortez High, I did not fit in with any crowd of women or men. I knew a blonde girl, “Blondie” looking like who liked the same kind of rock and roll as myself so we shared the same commonality. The counter culture of teenagers at Cortez High was small. Also, I was a very introverted person compared to now. Since I did not belong to anything, I knew where I fit in, which was with the counter culture. Definitely something was in the air. Could feel it, see it and smell the resistance. As an artist as a still photographer I was apart of it from that time until today I take still photographs. Now I am a Dine’ filmmaker. The Doors represented a time in my life: about who I was, what I did and how I felt about things. Their music shaped me as a person. I really never deviated from it either. I became older but wiser.

    However, an aspect about James Morrison which differed a lot from myself is that he did not care to be politically aware about many events and corruptions which happened in the world at the time, where as choose to be aware of events, which affects my Indigenous peoples, women, the environment and other topics. If he understood what went on such as with the Native Americans, other peoples’ of color and why it happened, maybe he might have been expressive about it. Some points of conflict like the Vietnam war, he expressed dissatisfaction and wrote an anti-war song called the Unknown Soldier. Therefore, he expressed some resistance, but for the most part he was not a total resister in that way. J. Morrison like John Lennon was observed by Mr. Jay Edgar Hoover and the the F.B.I., Cointelpro, but I doubt he knew it. Maybe he knew it?

    With each new documentary like “When You’re Strange” documentary about Jim Morrison’s life and The Doors’ lives, I receive a take on it and learn more about the Doors.

  • JOHN JOHNSON

    I ENJOYED THE DOORS ON AMERICAN MASTERS! IS THERE GOING TO BE A DVD AVAILABLE SOON?

  • Kevin

    Is it just me, or does anyone else find it odd and somewhat hypocritical for PBS to broadcast a documentary extolling the virtues of Jim Morrison and his bold attempt to push beyond societal norms and censorship, and then liberally censoring his words as well as any displays of, heaven forbid, nudity?

    I understand that PBS has to be careful not to offend the sensibilities of baby boomers in order to receive their generous contributions, but if that is the case, they should stick with repeats of doo wop revivals or Pavarotti. I saw this excellent documentary a few weeks ago in the theatre and was very moved. When I had to sit through it again on PBS, and hear every third word “bleeped”, I was just sad. Perhaps this was PBS’ sly way of highlighting the failure of the 60’s generation to change the fundamental dynamics of our repressive society. I doubt it.

    By the way, some folks are thanking PBS for this documentary as if they produced it or financed it. To the best of my knowledge they did not. The director/producer simply licensed it to American Masters. I just wish they had chosen cable.

    All that said, I thoght this was one terrific, sad, thrilling, and haunting documentary. Beats the heck out of Johnny Maestro and the Brooklyn Bridge.

  • Michael Mersfelder

    Being a Doors fan my entire life, this film did not disappoint. I too have been to the birth place of ‘Jim’ and seen the house he grew up in. It was then (1998) a Plastic Surgery Clinic. It is at the base of the bridge that connects the mainland to the beach in Melbourne Fl. Enjoyed it! Riders on the Storm

  • Dingle

    All I can say is THANK YOU PBS for a wonderful documentary on the The Doors. Thanks also to Tom DiCillo!!! Johnny Depp was the best for this documentary… I have read every book on the DOORS, read Jims Poetry, seen every thing I can see onThe Doors but this Documentary was by far the most moving one of all. By the end I found myself crying and Asking ” What hurt so much Jim, Why were you so lost Jim, You had so much more to give to the world Jim, why did you leave????” Yes, he could be so self centered, hateful, and down right mean, But he also could be so much like a lost soul and a small boy looking for that one person to really understand him. Pam was not it, she used him and his mind to her advantage. He was totaling mesmerising and a genius. A genius is on the brink of InSanity aren’t they. I could go on and on and on with so many comments about Jim but it was not only JIM. It was the whole BAND that made it work. The rest of the band put up with his insanity and played the best music that the world ever heard. Real Doors fans know all the songs not just the ones played on the radio. Have you listened to Jims voice in “Not to Touch the Earth?” My goodness, he speaks right to your soul……. All I know I have loved the Doors sinc eI first heard their songs played over and over on our high school juke box in the lunch room. I actually stopped in my tracks. They made an impact on each and every one of us during the 60′ and 70’s. The doors music will always make that statement, it still is today. James Douglas Morrison, Mr. Mojo Risin, his memory will live on long after those of us who actually got to see him and first hear “THE DOORs” enter our new world changing…

  • Kevin

    AIRS AGAIN FRIDAY 3 AM (TONIGHT) AND MONDAY 12 AM (SUNDAY NIGHT).

  • Tim From Philly

    It was JIM in the Mustang!!!!!

  • Eric Jones

    Okay, so I missed this thing. I thought it was on Thursday. Rats. Will this be airing again in the near future, or am I doomed to have to purchase the DVD? I just read this great book about Laurel Canyon, and all the music people that lived there during the 60’s and 70’s, and they mention the Doors alot. Anyway, when can we see this thing on PBS again? Let us know!

  • Mike

    How can we purchase?

  • fermata1

    This story touched me, babe. I am beginning to understand where I came from. Morrison was out of line, but stretched freedom of expression. Funny, how no one had photos to enforce fthe “Felony” in Dade County. I hope is alive, partying w/ Elvis & Ken Lay. Cheers, sexy babe!

  • Eddie

    Arlene Bowman, I TOTALLY disagree with you. Don’t mix your politics with Music. Good Music, unlike the crap today, may touch on politics, or any part of life, but as the justice of the Supreme Court said about pornography, we know good music when we hear it. I doubt that any of the music today will ever be featured in an American Masters program. The musical artists of today are accomplished performer/technicians, but the song writing is a solid ZERO. ( And whats the deal with Johnny Depp? He so carefully manages his image, his facial air, eyeglasses, his wardrobe, it’s creepy. And what’s the deal with Morrison and Andy Warhol that was touched upon in the program?) The music of the Doors was NOT over processed, over produced as music is today. A four track tape recorder was all that was needed. I’m in NYC, but one day I hope to drive a car in LA at night on a traffic free freeway, playing “LA Woman” out of the speakers. My only major criticism was at the very end, the credits list the names of the members of The Doors, then suddenly, there was a 30-60 second promo for some upcoming program. THEN the rest of the credits of the show. PLEASE PBS, have some respect for the shows you broadcast and wait for all the credits to play before playing your promos.

  • basquiat1960

    all righty… first off, morrison’s dad was a navy admiral. so give the guy a break, he probably was spanked as a child over and over. like the doc. said, even though hish parents finally came to see a DOORS concert in DC – he didn’t see them (who knows why). second, morrison was a poet, who was dissed by his dad. he had the courage to go off on his own and do his thing. for ther person that said “yeah, I saw him and he was drunk both times,” i hope you have never been seen out drunk – and if not or so good for you. …. now, playing w/ yourself and being lewed on stage is not something i’d agree with, but then again, the charges were delayed in dade county, because they were waiting on actual pictures to back up the felony. guess what, the dade county folks never had any hard evidence, and morrison was not arrested at the time. he hid from this and he did put on a shotty concert. i never really liked the DOORS, born in 1960, not a big fan, but since viewing this documentary, i’ve chaged my tune. so many things happened during my tender years…, exeuctions (inculding bobby kennedy, martin luther K, and robert K). the o/verdose/ deaths of janis joplin, jimmy hindrix)…what a freaky dark time. the musical background of the musicians in the band was so telling – in the beginning of the film. johnny depp’s narration was also fantastic. while they mentioned he was the narrator in the beginning, i forgot it was him in the end because i was so enthralled. these folks were not just freaky people – they were early on trained musicians (w/ the exception of Morrison). Well, is he still with us, living w/ Ken Lay & Elvis??? A visit to Jim’s grave is in order on my next visit to Gay Pareeeee. there’s nothing glamerous about drinking yourself to death – while it might look like fun, i have a feeling that while jim was walking the streets alone in paris jotting his notes or words, he was lonely. and when he called out from his bath, “are you still there,” why wasn’t pam in there w/ him? i would have always been in the tub w/ that sexy beast, but that’s just me….. Love to Jim

  • Kevin

    I posted a brief comment yesterday to raise the issue of whether PBS was the appropriate forum to air this excellent documentary about Jim Morrison — an artist who opposed censorship and societal restraints on artistic expression — when every third word uttered by Morrison was censored and images of the human body pixillated. I understood when I wrote the post that PBS is subject to FCC guidelines, but nevertheless offered my opinion that PBS’ trading on Morrison’s legacy and mystique was somewhat hypocritical under the circumstances. I would have preferred if the producers of the movie had licensed it to cable or some other forum that would have preserved the integrity of the content without resorting to censorship — a position with which Mr. Morrison would have undoubtedly agreed.

    As if to prove my point about PBS, you have chosen not to even post my critique. My comment was not “inappropriate and/or malicious in nature” as stated in your positing guidelines, and was not lengthy, unclear or unfair. It was simply critical of PBS . Apparently, such criticism is not permitted by the “editorial staff” in this forum.

    Accordingly, I assure you that the donation we already made to PBS this year will be our last. We do not need to subsidize a network that airs a documentary about the Doors to drum up contributions, but routinely engages in the very behavior Mr. Morrison would have found to be abhorent.

  • Barbara

    I LOVED it! Watched it with my mom, who didn’t approve of the extracarricular activities, but loved the MUSIC, which is the most important.

    The Morrison in this film was a Morrison unlike any I’d seen portrayed elsewhere in books and movies. Yes, Jim could be egotistical and sexist, as were many rock stars of that time. But that footage in which Morrison is looking at the girl who was hit by the chair and tending to her wound showed a very sensitive, kind and decent man. I didn’t expect that.

    This documentary also reveals a Morrison who appeared to be more shy and introverted than arrogant. It also accurately portrayed Morrison the bipolar person who self-medicated with huge amounts of alcohol (which was an uncool drug with young people in the 60s). Back in the ’60s, we didn’t know as much about mental illness as we do now. And so those who loved Jim coped the best way they knew how.

    Thank you for showing this documentary.

  • Sidney Koloc

    Is this available on DVD? “A history of the doors–when you’re strange

  • Nicole

    This was an excellent documentary especially because it used actual footage – no actors. What an amazing group of musicians, and Jim Morrison – Wow! It is no wonder that their music is so incredible and never gets old. Thank you to all those above who have left some really inciteful comments. For those who missed this showing of the documentary, it is supposed to replay on Sunday, May 16th at 2:00 a.m. on OPB (Oregon). I hope other PBS stations replay it as well.

  • Richard

    The best documentary of a rock band ever! I definitely will be adding this to my library. When will be it be available for sale?

  • Shelley

    Absolutely a wonderful show. I realized American Masters had something to say after since the feature of Woody Guthrie.

    The Doors only 5 years before my coming of age, and it was over when I arrived. I never knew anything more than recognizing the name Jim Morrison, Doors, and the songs. I was glad to be around when it came on… and especially mesmerized with actual footage of the band. I didn’t move until it was over.

  • Kathy Boo

    Saw them in concert 1969. Wonderful, Jim got on Stage and proclaimed :Love that Smell”. People threw weed etc.. on the stage. It was wonderful. They were a great band.

  • Andy Halsey

    I would to buy a copy. Please tell me how i can do so.

  • momcat

    The Doors are the ” SYMBOLIST POETS ” of America. They left us way too soon…

    They took us where the SYMBOLIST French poets led us with their words that were transformed into
    music. The meaning comes from within your own self. It has nothing much to do with words.

    The DOORS put the ” tearing of the curtain , the magic of perception ” into powerful images. Wonderful!

  • Kyle – Brooklyn

    One of my all time favorite bands – The Doors.

  • Randy Snyder

    I remember Jim Morrison and The Doors from the beginning of their career until Jim’s alleged death in 71′. A forty-three year love affair and counting. I’ve loved everything he/they did. And what huge talent these musicians had. Even though Mojo will be almost seventy years old; I still don’t really think he’s dead. Alive or dead; I still love you James Douglas Morrison! There is just no way a man like JM was going to spend six months in a Southern, hard labor prison camp. He was too pretty for that anyway. Mojo is still rising. Rock on Mojo!

  • liz

    I missed this. Is there any possibility of watching it online now?

  • Dominick J. Fontana

    The documentary was very well done. It should have been two hours long though, since they seemed to rush through some parts of it.

    I saw the Doors in New York at the Felt Forum and they used part of that concert on the “Ansolutely LIve” album. Besides the Beatles, they were always my favorite band. Years ago, I bought all 7 original albums the day they came out and then years later, I bought all the CDs.

    Their music is still great and still relevant.

  • kc

    I am 20 years old, and loved this documentary. Jim Morrison is a master of his art and along with the other members of the band. I know i am young to be talking about The Doors, but i grew up listening to the doors with my dad, along with alot of the other groups of the 60’s and 70’s but none got my attention like The Doors. Thanks PBS.

  • Ruth Bentz

    Found the doors music later in life and have loved them ever since. Jims poetry is beautiful! He reminds me of so many other artists who have just been to tortured for this planet. Hopefully hes in a better place swimming or whatever with his beautiful chest bare and his leather pants on!

  • tim pryor

    will this documentary be aired again? I’d love to see it again. Thanks.

  • The Music Man

    OK. What we have with this film is a Jim fest complete with Johnny Depp doing a laughable immitation of cool talk from the 60’s. Jim “you can’t tell me what to do” Morrison continues to be one of the poster boys for the adolecent mentality that deludes itself into believing psuedo intellectualism as the real thing (cue James Dean please) No folks, sorry, he wasn’t a genius. He did however enjoy drama, crowd manupulation, and being the center of attention at any cost. Now, what the film did NOT show (because this was primarily a Jim Fest) was significant portions of information about the other band members Robbie, John and Ray (as an example of this ask yourself what you learned about Manzerek’s personal history, role in writing material, educational history, role in band discussions, etc.) The only other band member that got bit of attention, in this production, was Robbie Kreiger (who certainly played a major role in the band. ) Additionally, even as a Jim fest, this production didn’t emphsize the pyscological conditions that exited between Morrison and his father. So, I would say that this film untimately was essentially a tabloid presentation of a celebrity, and not a study of the elements that made up the Doors and their sound.

  • Welin-St.Paul-12/16/62

    Awesome documentary. I love The Doors music—always have, but the nature of Jim’s behavior puts a damper on the respect the group truely deserves. He did not respect his group. Anti-establishment?—Yes, but a sloppy display of making one’s point—non deserving of respect, just as much non deserving as the establishment and demons he struggled with. We can have a raw unfettered show of sound, words, and talent, without the selfish and self absorbed displays of personal anguish. When Jim Morrison looked in the mirror, he only seemed to reabsorb his own pain in the reflection that stared back at him. Would we have paid more attention to a more mature controlled artist? Maybe, but only if we can get away from our own ignorance and ideals about humanity, non of which were taught to any of us at home or in school from a psycho-social perspective—not even in todays world are we taught about true human behavior and brain activity in conjuction and connection to social reality. We feed our children garbage for food, and we still think we can manipulate our fate through war—has it all been in the name of vain and sensational displays? It’s time to get smart, grow up, get off the drugs and alcohol, open a book, and look beyond your own reflection. If anything can be learned from Jim Morrison’s mistakes—this is it…

  • Crispino Ramos

    I saw this awesome documentary twice. Jim Morrison is indeed an artistic genius, un-influenced by musical training was a plus in his being original and creative. He created his style from raw emotions and genuine love for music plus poetry. A charismatic youthful, idealist responding to the politics, moral norm of his time – he was a gem whose brilliance had attracted so many fans and angered the status quo. It was sort of a coming of age story but unfortunately, he got into drugs and alcohol.

    Good bye Jim, you and your music are alive in our hearts!

    Crispino Ramos

  • Greg in Baltimore

    I will always remember trekking out to this abandoned old house in the woods with my good friend. It was 1986, late winter and we brought along a boom box which blasted out the Doors’ first album. The bright moon, the creepy forest, the strange shadows, and how we tripped on LSD all night, despite the temperature at freezing. It was an incredible experience.

  • LJJ

    When will this be available on DVD? I only saw part of it, and it was really well done. Rock On!

  • David

    I agree wholeheartedly with Kevin. What was with the bleeps and the image distortion and black bars for images/words/material unsuitable for younger and more sensitive viewers? Why bother at all showing a Doors documentary if you’re going to censor it to ribbons? Come on PBS, you had enough balls to showcase Soft Parade when it was first released, it seems you’ve lost your way. How about P(G-13)BS for your call letters? Can’t you at least air this at a later time if you’re so nervous?

    When the Monty Python troupe discovered that network TV was taking the scissors to their BBC episodes, they yanked them. The Doors withdrew their commercial support for a Ford commercial featuring Light My Fire. Ray, Robbie, and John, do the right thing here and at least condemn this censorship. Jim sure as hell wouldn’t have put with it.

  • Rose

    Please let me know where Jims house was in melbourne….I have tried to look for it and can not find it……I love him to death…..I live in melbourne and am so intrigued by all this….when will the movie air again!!!

  • Michael

    I think my slight hearing loss now came from lying in bed with speakers held up to my ears listening to The Doors at full volume in the sixties.I can still hear the songs in my mind even now.The music’s not over.

  • Rev. Robert Ashley Beagle

    I identify alot with Jim Morrison. We both have studied philosphy, religon and Shamanism. In face my motorcycle is dedicated in his honor. It has his pictuire on the tank and “Break On Through” on the sides of the tank. Check out my bike pictures on Facebook.com – Profile- Robert Ashley Beagle

  • Bob

    Great film about one of my favorite bands. Anyone know when or if this will be released on dvd or better yet blu-ray..

  • Bruce

    When will this film be available to view online at this PBS website??? I am so eager to view it :) Thanks.

  • BilinGA

    Excellent documentary on the Doors, the best I have seen. I have a much older documentary from the early 80s and this has so much more footage I have never seen. It has to be a Blu-Ray release, the HD conversion of the period 8mm movies and photos was excellent. Great Job!!!

  • rone#9

    sadly the organization is still trying to perpetuate the myth
    that Jim just “died”….
    this film has alot
    but leaves out alot
    Jimbo died from an overdose of smack
    thrown in a bath to croak…if he wasn’t dead already….

    to say this film is Great or Excellent? no way…the beginning with the footage from HWY

    gets cheesey with Jim Ladd….sadly they used no footage of Jimbo walking the parapet….

    and another mark on Johnny Depp for not having any integrity and selling out for a paycheck….

    ” Jim died ” …….

    I see this film as nothing more than a marketing strategy to generate more sales among the new generation who doesn’t care how their music sounds….iPodders and mp3er’s

  • Thierry

    When will this air again?
    I live in Norcal and missed the original broadcast on the 12th…

  • Thierry

    Thank you PBS for your great programs…that’s why I’m in California!

  • Mark

    Back in the 70s and 80s PBS regularly showed things uncensored. They carried a re-enactment of the Chicago 7 trial that was filled MFs and every other word. And they showed “I, Claudius” uncut, among many, many other things.

    Now they are complete moral cowards. The documentary was great, but the way PBS showed it was disgusting. But I guess “Antique Roadshow” is now their standard fare. What a shame.

  • Sal

    THE FUTURE IS UNCERTAIN AND THE END IS ALWAYS NEAR!

  • Louis

    I attended the Miami concert-show-incident at Dinner Key Auditorium in March 1969. It was turbulent, bizarre and above all, amazing! Morrison radicalized me that night. The media madness, “Rally for Decency,” arrest warrant and trial which followed was a farce. Anyway, the documentary was great and the footage from Miami awakened memories. Congratulations PBS.

  • Ken

    I love the Doors but I did not love this documentary. Their music is timeless but this piece will soon be forgotten.

  • jonathan t.

    i missed this show as my local channel hid the rebroadcast from direct tv. i called station today and no luck of a future broadcasts. help?

  • Chris

    How can I get a copy of this film? Can I purchase DVD or VCR copy? Pls. advise?

  • Tobe

    Enjoying all the first-person recollections of Doors performances, as a relative latecomer (35!) who shares the transfixion.
    Found this last year: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ajmexico/2289455978/
    I made a trip to Melbourne, found this place, took a bunch of pictures (building was being fixed up). Local people said there was a house still standing, but I didn’t find it (to my knowledge).

  • Pepecoatl

    Larga Vida al Rey Lagarto…
    el mayor exponente de la musica Rock en la historia de America..
    En Monterrey N.L. Mexico nos preparamos año tras año para conmemorar el mes de Julio con celebraciones en Honor a la mas grande figura de la contracultura musical de todos los tiempos..James Douglas Morrison..
    2 de Julio en el Cafe Iguana comienza la Celebracion..
    Musica, Video, Ensambles…
    Tributo a The Doors por Quetzalcoatl..
    facebook.com/quetzalcoatl doors tribute
    pepecoatl@yahoo.com.mx

  • Lori

    I, too would love to purchase a copy on DVD. Please advise or let me know when this show will air again.
    Thank you.

  • Patty

    I would like to find a copy of it as well.

  • Shelly Marshall

    I would like to buy the DVD

  • STEVE MAGYAR

    When your strange-A film about The Doors”.
    I just watched the best Doors movie ever
    produced,hands down. I had to watch one
    part 3 or 4 times to see something that I
    believe I have seen before and have first
    hand knowledge of. Approx. 50 minutes into
    the film they show a mint copy of Jim’s
    “The New Creatures”. I have had the
    pleasure to have stored in a safety deposit
    box 2 original mint copies of “The New Creatures”
    and 1 original mint copy of Jim’s “An
    American Prayer”. I purchased the three books
    from Skyline Books which is a rare book
    dealer out west. I had the 3 locked up
    for over 15 years. I recently consigned 1
    copy of The New Creatures with Kerry
    Humpherys who is owner of the “Doors
    Music Co.,he’s otherwise known as “Editor-
    in Chief. I was understood it was sold before
    he ever recieved it in the mail. In Kerry’s words
    and I quote,”it’s the finest copy of “The New Creatures”
    I’ve ever seen. The copy I sent Kerry was a clean
    and in as close to mint condition as the
    day it was printed. That is with one small
    acception. I still have .jpeg images of the
    book and in the bottom right front of the cover
    is a small bend in the cover and you look
    close at the film you’ll see that bend. I e-mail Kerry
    today and he has yet to get back to me. I’m positively
    sure it’s the same copy I owned for 15 years
    and kick myself in the A__ every day for selling it.
    If it is I’ll know I made it possibly for the movie
    to have the best pristine copy that hasn’t been
    lost to neglected or someone not realizing
    how important Jim’s poety was to become years
    after Jim was gone.In some small way I have some
    satisfaction that the film had the finest copy still
    available because I knew Jim was a Genius,Poet
    and a Lizard King and that his work will stand side
    by side with the other greats like Poe,Yeats,Kipling or
    Keats. You never heard of some of those names?
    Your are missing some poety that is a pleasure to
    read. One day when my “Music is Over” and it’s
    “My End” I know Jim gift to the world will live on for
    future generation to enjoy making Jim as close to
    immortal as you can get. Like they say
    in the film “You can’t burnout unless your on fire”.

  • Colin

    Bravo. An entertaining and artistic look at one of my favorites bands (Doors) and performers (Morrison). How talented and how influential. Had the great pleasure of viewing the screening and watching the broadcast on PBS. Thoroughly enjoyed.

  • Jim

    Thank’s!

  • Jun Nicolas

    In 1980 I first heard Jim Morrison’s An American Prayer, my mind was blown away, then I sought out their materials and have been intrigued by each and every other song they recorded. When I got to a copy of Jim’s bio No One here Get’s Out Alive, I swear it was the only book till this day that had me riveted that I finished the whole book from evening till dawn. I was a big Stones fan then, but when I had known Jim and the Band, for almost five years I listened to no ther stuff but the Doors music up to a point when U2, Nirvana and the Chili Peppers arrived. Jim Morrison is the It of Rock. Anybody who knows rock n roll there ain’t no bigger figure than Jim.

  • debbie starr

    wow!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Aussiepeacefrog

    I really enjoyed the previously unseen footage, but it would have been SO MUCH BETTER if even one of the songs was left uncut. Seriously, this is a Doors film, about the Doors yet not one song is complete? WHY?
    I think the soundtrack CD is more complete, artistically because the songs are complete.
    Now, surely it’s time to put HWY and the “Isle of Wight” performance on DVD….FOR the FANS….

    Come ON !!!! DO IT !!!

  • James

    Great band. JM was a thought provoking character who introduced the masses to the exploration of the mind. He died too young, as did Pam!

  • Mediumrare

    Well done. What an excellent piece of work. Years (decades!) of watered down Doors-related infotainment and you start to think you’ve seen and heard it all. Then something like “When You’re Strange” comes along that can repeat a well known history and make it seem new- brand new. Thank God for TIVO, because I had to go back and re-watch portions because I couldn’t believe what I was seeing; my inner skeptic told me “no way that is Jim Morrison driving a station wagon across the desert.” Shock! A compelling and riveting piece of work.

  • Vicky

    There is a scene in the film that involves a coyote. Was that real and how did they just “happened” upon it? It’s been bothering me ever since watching the show. I would really like to know.

  • MoJo

    Well, another movie on the Doors, every 20 years another one, this time a documentary.
    It’s OK for someone new into the world of this revolutionary, inimitable group. Still too short and superficial, especially there is much more to say about Jim, his thoughts, philosophy, his private life. Nonetheless a good movie, worth to watch.

    BTW, for me JM is not just another rockstar, he’s an artist, even one of the most important of the 20th century. What he did is art, his life is art, he himself is art – an artist who coincides with his work a very rare phenomenon.

    I’m curious how the Doors and Jim will be characterized the next 20 years from now on.

  • j herrera

    would ‘ve love to buy this music dvd, but i heard its not for sale.

  • Scott

    Such an amazing moment in history when these young men came together. I attended USC in the early 90’s, and there was a serious interest in The Doors among my fellow students. The transcendent force of this band is just remarkable. I feel as if I walked with Jim for a time: the psychedelics, the liquor, the pot, the poetry, the hint of extravagant possibility in that warm LA wind as dusk. Somehow I survived and it’s my good fortune that I now have a family, a house, a career. But I respect Jim’s approach to this life…he certainly pursued his convictions with total abandon. We need those who answer the call of duty, of responsibility to others, but we also need every so often to be reminded of the illusion of this world by those who cast aside these concerns and live completely in the moment…the rapturous moment.
    Portland, OR

  • Amber

    How can I get a copy of this film? Can I purchase DVD?

  • Karen

    Please make this available for purchase. I need a USA and a no region version copy that works in AU for my good friend Larraine.

  • wpgpeanut

    Loved this film. I watch it every couple of weeks.

  • Cosmic Navel Lint

    Come on Baby, Right my Prior…?

    At the risk of being cursively clear-headed, and ignoring all the obsequious, embarrassing and gushing fanboy nonsense, can I please ask, why, if indecent exposure was a crime at the time (as I’m guessing it still is in Florida) – for which Morrison was charged and found guilty – he should now receive (an albeit utterly useless to him) posthumous pardon?

    Or did he just get an “I’m a Celebrity, and still Treated Like some Minor Deity by Fawning Fans, and therefore I should be Treated Differently to other Mere Mortals” pass? Doesn’t it just smack of two-tier justice (in other words, hypocrisy)?

    I’m sure if any other US male waved his Johnson around in public and were arrested (then or now), charged with, and found guilty of, the same offence, then he would not be accorded the same Hail Mary Pass as Morrison – whether immediately after the offence, or 40-odd years after his death.

    I’ve heard it postulated that “this is mostly because there was no evidence that he [Morrison] actually did it.”

    In which case, if there was ‘no evidence’, then might one ask precisely how and why was he convicted? Unless you’re suggesting that jurisprudence in the US is akin to that of a kangaroo court or a banana republic?

    Morrison was merely a drunken jerk who found himself privileged to play a band of professional musicians and abused that privilege (ultimately destroying the band as an operational force in its heyday) – and proved to be a consummate waster whilst he did it.

    And no amount of fanboy “re-imagining” is gonna change that.

  • Victor

    This is in response to the fool above me..Cosmic etc…
    Jim Morrison was not guilty of what he was charged with; do you not understand that? Before you offer such an in-depth opinion of what actually happened, you really need to have familiarized yourself with the details of the case and what actually happened, or else you appear to be an imbecile.
    The warrant for arrest was not issued until 4 days after the concert in Miami, keep in mind there were dozens of police officers present.
    Of the hundreds of photos submitted as evidence, not one showed anything related to the charge of exposure.
    You can check out additional facts about the case if your moral head requires it.
    If youre slightly open to learning about things you dont know much about; go read a few books about Morrison, instead of regurgitating the idiot, and incorrect, cliches about his life and music.

  • Rob J

    Jim Morrison was a gifted vocalist who drank far too much. This is a fascinating cd which has been well conceived, with not many obvous “hits”. What it does remind the listener was the fact The Doors were pretty much masters of many of America’s musical genres.

    If he was around now at the height of his powers, Justin Beiber would be selling burgers in some obscure
    town. You wouldn’t be able to put a price on his looks.

    Gone, certainly not forgotten. Expect a major overhaul of Jimbo come the 40th anniversary of his death…..

  • Donna Hughes

    I thought that Johnny Depp’s narration for this was perfectly magical. A wonderful production all the way around!

  • Brent Lloyd

    When can it be seen again either online or DVD?

    Thanks and one the best ever done by anybody. Superb!

  • tony crays

    i think everyone focuses on jims self destruction way too much. thats too obvious but i think u have the right to do what u want in life the way u feel like living it. we need more people that advocates personal freedom and educate people about the double edged sword that goes with it. lets celebrate laughter and freedom and enjoy the good that came from jims life. by the way i suggest WONDERLAND AVE. TALES OF GLAMOUR AND EXCESS BY DANNY SUGARMAN MUST READ FOR DOORS FANS!

  • Randy Thomes

    After viewing this show several days ago, I’ve been meaning to see what the response there would be. Thankfully I found a few comments above that reflect what I feel about this film. I was let down. Usually, American Masters does a superb job, but certainly not this time. I could not agree more with the Music Man’s comment re: “A Jim Fest”.

    In the end, I would like to know more about the others. They were the true geniuses. To me, Morrison, through his manipulation, coerced his fans into believing he was something more than the addict he was. And apparently it’s still working.

  • moondog

    great film i am a huge doors fan and this was a good depiction of the doors as they came to life. johnny depp did a great job with the narration i recently bought the doors of perception box set it is awesome. R.I.P jim 7-3-11

  • amintern

    The Doors: When You’re Strange DVD is available through Eagle Vision and should be purchasable on amazon. Thank you for your interest. We hope you continue to visit the website for many more new exciting profiles and upcoming premiere information.

  • amintern

    The Doors: When You’re Strange DVD is now available for purchase on the shop PBS website. Thank you for your interest. We hope you continue to visit the website for many more new exciting profiles and upcoming premiere information.

  • http://bathsaltdrug.com bath salt drug

    I saw a video of the doors playing for one of the last times I think in Florida. The one were he is obviously tripping on LSD, regardless he still kills it.

  • TxWallis

    Awesome Film…………the soul of the country was parallel to the Doors. There will never be such a celebration, of life again, The deaths of R.Kennedy, M.L.King, and thousands of our Vietnam youth, by the establishment, was the “horror fuel” to push the celebration, forward, as if we didn’t, American would have collapsed, into chaos.
    Joplin, Hendrix, Morrison will live on.

  • Jeff Ellis

    Love this movie, I have watched it a few times.

  • izolasyon

    I watched a few times, thanks for the nice article

  • LaserLipo

    The movie of the Doors was great too with Val Kilmer. They have such classic songs that will never die. I like their hit and even some of the lesser known songs like “20th century fox”. This is all getting me in the mood of watching the movie again.

  • RevolutionRabbitNov63

    …On the first pass I thot this doc. zipped by everything too quickly
    - but on the 2nd pass – I realized that that was actually very much the nature of the ride – ! :
    - Too Fast.
    - & so appropriate.

    - Good job – !
    …Made the right creative choices.
    …After the Oliver Stone film – I really wanted a decent documentary – so Thanx – !
    (…I went back to the Stone film after decades – & found I liked better than I thot did back then – @ least that time! Let him have his impression, like we all do…)

    …It’s too bad documentaries don’t make big bucks – & everything has to be Dramatized for commercial mass consumption.

    - So Thank God & Goddess for Public Broadcasting – !

    - ‘Jim Morrison – Life, Death, Legend’ by Stephen Davis seems to me the most complete & currently definitive book about Morrison: A bit of an eye-opener – !…

    …On related topix – I recommend ‘Wonderland Avenue’ by Danny Sugerman to Doors & Jim fans.

  • ronald baker

    When will you show the movie “When you are strange” again?

  • Carolyn Bakes

    It’s highly amusing that occasionally the comment spam is semi-on topic (”Buy DVDs Online”)

  • Victor Mccleery

    You and your videographer Lisa are doing a terrific job. Keep it up. I’m living this event vicariously through you, so I’m hoping you have more amazing experiences. Enjoy!

  • william

    What was using the bleeps and the image distortion and also black pubs for images/words/material improper for youthful and more vulnerable viewers? The reason why bother whatsoever showing the Doors written if you’re planning to censor it for you to ribbons? Think about it PBS, you had enough balls to showcase Smooth Parade if this was first launched, it seems you’ve missing your way. Think about P(G-13)Baloney for your phone letters? Can’t you at least air this at another time if you’re therefore nervous? http://wallmounted-bottleopener.co.cc/

  • Miguel Rosales

    Thank You American Masters! It is said that we never appreciate what is in front of us until it is gone. I fell in love wtih music of The Doors after I bought an old album at a swap meet. I was only ten years but that opened the floud gates of my conscious to the blues, jazz, rock and every type of soulful delicacy available to us. The Doors music, just like any great thing that comes along in our life time, we grab it and enjoy it and sip of its’ wonderful nectar to fill our soul.

  • Jared Bertrand

    The best storry of the Doors i have ever heard .A real true story a no holds bar so to speak of what the four of them had lived though together and experienced in thier life time.It brought tears to my eyes to see the messages in the songs that went along with the movie.Thank you so much for this amazing footage and extreme storry of the doors and of the world they lived in at the time and the world they still live in today.Thankyou

  • Elizabeth Treacy

    Can When you’re Strange be purchased?

Salinger

Produced by THIRTEEN    ©2014 Educational Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.