Tag Archives: On the Road Movie

Beats on the Big Screen

As I am sure you will know, Kerouac’s 1951 classic, On the Road is now ‘in the can’… hopefully it makes its way to our shores this coming summer. I am particularly excited about seeing Sam Riley’s portrayal of Sal Paradise (Kerouac) and Viggo Mortensen’s take on Old Bull Lee (Burroughs). They are two actors, who rarely miss for me, so I am hoping they really capture the frenetic, freewheeling spirit of Jack & Bill. I am not as familiar with the work of Garrett Hedlund, but let’s hope he brings the necessary energy to make Dean Moriarty (Cassady) crackle on screen. If you haven’t already seen it, here’s the trailer:

And just as exciting, is the release of two new Beat Documentaries, Beat Hotel and The Poetry Deal: a film with Diane di Prima.

Beat Hotel takes a look at the heady days of the Beats in Paris (1957 – 63); when Ginsberg, Orlovsky & Corso fled the aftermath of the Howl obscenity trial and holed up at 9 Rue Git le Couer where they were joined by the likes of William S. Burroughs, Ian Sommerville, Brion Gysin & Harold Norse. In this no-name hotel, dubbed Beat Hotel, Burroughs would complete his revolutionary book, Naked Lunch, Corso would write some of his greatest poems and Sommerville & Gysin would invent the Dream Machine. It was an experimental sanctuary, where outcasts, oddballs and misfits were welcomed. Here’s the trailer:

And The Poetry Deal, looks at the life of one of the Beat era’s revolutionary women, Diane di Prima. You only need to dip into Memoirs of a Beatnik to know that di Prima, lived as wild as any of the men; her explosive texts bursting with a spirit of rebellion. The film features many intimate interviews with di Prima and is ‘lyrical and energetic’ in its exploration of her life.


Filed under who listens to the radio?