Capital Celluloid 2019 - Day 228: Fri Aug 16

My Own Private Idaho (Van Sant, 1991): BFI Southbank, NFT1, 8.45pm

This film, which is also being screened on August 5th (details here), is part of the 90s season at BFI Southbank. Full details here.

Chicago Reader review:
Gus Van Sant's 1990 feature, his best prior to Elephant, is a simultaneously heartbreaking and exhilarating road movie about two male hustlers (River Phoenix and Keanu Reeves) in the Pacific Northwest. Phoenix, a narcoleptic from a broken home, is essentially looking for a family, while Reeves, whose father is mayor of Portland, is mainly fleeing his. The style is so eclectic that it may take some getting used to, but Van Sant, working from his own story for the first time, brings such lyrical focus to his characters and his poetry that almost everything works. Even the parts that show some strain—like the film's extended hommageto Orson Welles's Chimes at Midnight—are exciting for their sheer audacity. Phoenix was never better, and Reeves does his best with a part that's largely Shakespeare's Hal as filtered through Welles.
Jonathan Rosenbaum

Here (and above) is the trailer.

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