The best part may be snaring the old Quiet Riot drummer Drew Forsyth (who was miffed Rhoads never called him to tell him he was leaving for Ozzy’s band), Rhoads’ girlfriend Lori Hollen, who had previously been Quiet Riot lead singer Kevin DuBrow’s girlfriend (a juicy turn that the singer didn’t take too well).
A welcome addition to the film (as well as to Quiet Riot) is Rudy Sarzo, who muses how hard it was for metal bands once new wave kicked in.
That band did hit it big, finally, four years after Rhoads left for Osbourne’s band in 1979. DuBrow, for his part, died of a drug overdose in 2007; there’s a Quiet Riot that tours and records currently with no original members.
The Ozzy footage in “Reflections of a Rock Icon” is largely taken from a 1991 video interview with Billy Pinnell that can be found on YouTube. There are also brief Ozzy comments from a Hollywood Rock Hall of Fame induction,
Raised by music teachers, whose example made him a teacher throughout his career, formally and informally, Rhoads seemed like a decent guy, a hardworking musician who wasn’t in it for parties or drugs, a kind of rarity in L.A. hair rock in those days. That may have been why he was so accomplished, throwing classical turns into the fret-tapping solos his fans enjoyed.
But if he truly was the icon of the film’s title, or legend, as narrator Tracii Guns calls him, surely there would be better existing footage of his work to convince 21st century audiences. Maybe it does exist but it was too difficult or expensive to acquire.
The scourge of even the best-intended low budget rock documentaries, as this one surely is, are the exorbitant fees required for necessary music rights. Hence, we hear a lot of people talk about how killer a certain solo was, but almost never get to hear what they were talking about so we could come to a similar conclusion. Instead, the soundtrack may have more guitar music from Sean Kelly, who scored.
An odd disclaimer deep in the credits says the video clips “may or may not be chronologically accurate,” noting that filmmakers “used their own discretion to present the events depicted for their entertainment and emotional value as well as historical accuracy.” So I guess when making a film about a “legend,” believe the legend.