Eat That Question: Frank Zappa in His Own Words

Synopsis: In the 20th Century, Frank Zappa made his mark as a musician unlike any other in America. With a wild eccentric iconoclastic attitude guiding his distinctive music, which it was itself guided by a firm intellectual integrity, Zappa made himself an unforgettable force in popular music. This film covers his life and work through various archival footage through the decades. Whether it was his taboo challenging early creations, his outspoken efforts against the political forces determined to censor him or his constant quest for new artistic challenges, Zappa made a mark no one could ignore.
Director(s): Thorsten Schütte
Production: Les Films du Poisson
  3 wins & 4 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
93 min


How does this camera look?

Is it nice?

Okay, how about this?

How about saying, "Hi, this is Frank Zappa.

"I guess... I... I guess you

don't have anything better

"to do tonight, huh?"

I mean, assuming that

they've flicked on the set

and they're sitting there, absorbing the rays.

"Well, you might as well sit back

and watch Take Off, then."

All of that?


You don't have to say

the stuff about the rays.

That's parenthetical.

Say it again?

Something like, "Hi, this is Frank Zappa.

"I guess you don't have

anything better to do tonight, huh?"

Yeah. Ready?


This is Frank Zappa.

I guess you don't have anything

better to do tonight, huh?

That's why you're watching Take Off.


Nothing better to do, huh?

Hello, we're talking with Frank Zappa,

a musician, filmmaker,

an independent thinker,

and a personal favorite of mine,

who's been in rock music

for almost two decades.

Well, I'm about to get sick

From watching my TV

Been checking out the news

Until my eyeballs fail to see...

Zappa is the leader of perhaps

the roughest and farthest-out group

in the scene today, the Mothers of Invention.

Is anybody's guess...

And ever since 1967,

he has left an explosive trail of music

that has had one constant throughout:

biting social commentary.

You're being victimized right now.

Do you know it?

That trouble coming every day

No way to delay that trouble

Coming every day...

You have a classical background.

That intrigues me. Are you doing...

Not really. I'm just... You know?

Frank Zappa is one of the most controversial

modern composers and musicians.

Zappa is perhaps most famous for a style

of musical satire

involving lavatorial expletives

and outrageous happenings.

Those are the same people who say,

"Yeah, he eats sh*t on stage

and steps on baby chickens."

The distorted mirror through which

we experience ourselves

and the neurotic, perverted

society that man has created.

On his street would take a turn...

The guy who sat on the toilet seat,

some kind of hairy monster from the '60s.

Well, let's face it, I sit on a toilet seat,

and so do you.

The only problem is that

somebody took my picture while I was there.

Every time I hear 'em

Sayin' that there's no way to delay

That trouble comin' every day...

Zappa is irreverent.

Some people think he is downright offensive.

What about this suggestion?

But I guarantee you this,

he absolutely will not bore you

and he very well may surprise you.

Well, hello.

F*** the union.

Well, what does it all add up to?

What is Frank Zappa about?

Well, I don't think that anybody

has ever seen the real Frank Zappa,

because being interviewed

is one of the most abnormal things

that you can do to somebody else.

It's two steps removed from the Inquisition.

All right. Are you rolling?

- Yep.

- What?

You okay? We can start? Okay.

It seems that the business thing

is usually the thing that

drags most artists down,

but I hear you're quite a great businessman.

Well, how have you managed

to survive so long?

Well, it is just a matter...

It's a matter of survival

more than success.

I have survived for 17 years.

Successfully? Survived?

I'm still in the business, that's something.

Are you happy?

Sure. I love what I'm doing.

I have the best job in the world.

If you had to define your job,

how would you define it?

I'm an entertainer.

Pure and simple.


Do you think the kind of entertainment

that people are craving now is much different

than it was when you first emerged?

No. I don't think so.

There's several different kinds of people

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Randy Sosin

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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