Beat

"Good"

Beat Review


Judy Davis might have commanded the definitive Joan Vollmer role in Naked Lunch, but in Beat, Courtney Love makes a not-half-bad at reinterpreting the last weeks of her life before being accidentally(?) shot in the head during a William Tell parlor trick by her famed writer husband William S. Burroughs.

Set in broken down Mexico City, the film finds Vollmer receiving a visit from beat-heads Allen Ginsburg (Ron Livingston) and Lucien Carr (Norman Reedus). (Carr, a minor figure in beat history, was a UPI reporter responsible for introducing many of the beats to one another as well as inspiring Jack Kerouac to type On the Road on a roll of teletype paper.) Burroughs (Kiefer Sutherland) is off on one of his bisexual booty calls, leaving his wife to ponder whether she should stay with her philandering husband (being no faithful lap dog herself) or skip town and return with her two kids to New York with Lucien and Allen. (Her very short history should tell you which route she actually chose.)

A loving portrait of the early beat lifestyle, Gary Walkow's ode to Vollmer is sweet and endearing, despite its tragic finale. The four lead players all imbue their characters with substanial flair, especially Sutherland's mannered and deadpan witticisms. The direction is capable if short of masterful (and sometimes Walkow's shots make it all to obvious he's trying to create a pretty shot, eventually making it painfully clear you're watching a movie). As well, the story's point-a-to-point-b plotting gets the job done with hardly a wasted line -- and without a second to spare, clocking in at about 78 minutes. Zoom!



Beat

Facts and Figures

Run time: 93 mins

In Theaters: Saturday 29th January 2000

Distributed by: LionsGate Entertainment

Production compaines: Martien Holdings A.V.V., Walking Pictures, Background Productions, Beat LLC, Millenium Pictures, Pendragon Film, Pfilmco

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 57%
Fresh: 4 Rotten: 3

IMDB: 5.6 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as William S. Burroughs, as Joan Vollmer Burroughs, as Allen Ginsberg, as Lucien Carr, as Lee, Alec Von Bargen as Heard, Tommy Perna as Dwight, Daniel Martínez as Jack Kerouac, as Dave Kammerer

Contactmusic


Links


Advertisement

New Movies

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

After the thunderous reception for J.J. Abrams' Episode VII: The Force Awakens two years ago,...

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Like the 2015 original, this comedy plays merrily with cliches to tell a silly story...

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

There's a somewhat contrived jauntiness to this blending of fact and fiction that may leave...

Ferdinand Movie Review

Ferdinand Movie Review

This animated comedy adventure is based on the beloved children's book, which was published in...

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Director Dave McCary makes a superb feature debut with this offbeat black comedy, which explores...

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

A dramatisation of the real-life clash between tennis icons Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs,...

Shot Caller Movie Review

Shot Caller Movie Review

There isn't much subtlety to this prison thriller, but it's edgy enough to hold the...

Advertisement
The Disaster Artist Movie Review

The Disaster Artist Movie Review

A hilariously outrageous story based on real events, this film recounts the making of the...

Stronger Movie Review

Stronger Movie Review

Based on a true story about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, this looks like one...

Only the Brave Movie Review

Only the Brave Movie Review

Based on a genuinely moving true story, this film undercuts the realism by pushing its...

Wonder Movie Review

Wonder Movie Review

This film may be based on RJ Palacio's fictional bestseller, but it approaches its story...

Happy End  Movie Review

Happy End Movie Review

Austrian auteur Michael Haneke isn't known for his light touch, but rather for hard-hitting, award-winning...

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Seemingly from out of nowhere, this film generates perhaps the biggest smile of any movie...

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

A Victorian thriller with rather heavy echoes of Jack the Ripper, this film struggles to...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.