IMDb > The Source: The Story of the Beats and the Beat Generation (1999)

The Source: The Story of the Beats and the Beat Generation (1999) More at IMDbPro »


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Traces the Beats from Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac's meeting in 1944 at Columbia University to the deaths of Ginsberg and William S... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
3 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Frames Cutting Up Through Time Endlessly: Watching TV See more (11 total) »


  (in credits order)

Johnny Depp ... Jack Kerouac

Dennis Hopper ... William S. Burroughs

John Turturro ... Allen Ginsberg

Allen Ginsberg ... Himself

Philip Glass ... Himself
Robert Creeley ... Himself
Ann Charters ... Herself
George Steade ... Himself
David Amram ... Himself

William S. Burroughs ... Himself
Ed Sanders ... Himself
Gregory Corso ... Himself
Kyle Roderick ... Himself - Corso biographer
Lawrence Ferlinghetti ... Himself

Ken Kesey ... Himself (archive footage)
Gary Snyder ... Himself

Jerry Garcia ... Himself
Jack Micheline ... Himself
Michael McClure ... Himself
Stephen Ronin ... Himself - Beat historian
Philip Whalen ... Himself
Terry Southern ... Himself
Timothy Leary ... Himself
Paul Krassner ... Himself
Diane Di Prima ... Herself
Tom Hayden ... Himself
David Dellinger ... Himself
John Sampas ... Himself
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Steve Allen ... Himself (archive footage)
Amiri Baraka ... Himself

Paul Bowles ... Himself (archive footage)
Lenny Bruce ... Himself (archive footage)

William F. Buckley ... Himself (archive footage)
Mortimer Burroughs ... Himself (archive footage)
John Cage ... Himself (archive footage)
Neal Cassady ... Himself (archive footage)
Shirley Clarke ... Herself (archive footage)

Walter Cronkite ... Himself (archive footage)
Richard J. Daley ... Himself (archive footage)

Bob Dylan ... Himself (archive footage)
Dizzy Gillespie ... Himself (archive footage)
Brion Gysin ... Himself (archive footage)
Abbie Hoffman ... Himself (archive footage)

Billie Holiday ... Herself (archive footage)
J. Edgar Hoover ... Himself (archive footage)

Bob Hope ... Himself (archive footage)

Lyndon Johnson ... Himself (archive footage)

Robert F. Kennedy ... Himself (archive footage)

Jack Kerouac ... Himself (archive footage)
Jan Kerouac ... Herself (archive footage)

Martin Luther King ... Himself (archive footage)

John Leguizamo ... Himself (archive footage)

Norman Mailer ... Himself (archive footage)

Steve Martin ... Himself (archive footage)

Groucho Marx ... Himself (archive footage)
Gilbert Millstein ... Himself
Robert Motherwell ... Himself (archive footage)

Deborah Norville ... Herself (archive footage)
Peter Orlovsky ... Himself (archive footage)
Stuart Perkoff ... Himself (archive footage)
Thomas R. Peters Jr. ... Himself
Marlon Riggs ... Himself (archive footage)

Henry Rollins ... Himself (archive footage)

Directed by
Chuck Workman 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Chuck Workman 

Produced by
Mark Apostolon .... associate producer
James Cady .... associate producer
Chuck Workman .... producer
Hiro Yamagata .... executive producer
Original Music by
David Amram 
Philip Glass 
Cinematography by
Andrew Dintenfass 
Tom Hurwitz 
Don Lenzer 
José Louis Mignone 
Nancy Schreiber 
Film Editing by
Chuck Workman 
Production Design by
Marc Greville-Masson 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Stephen A. Glanzrock .... first assistant director
Sound Department
Richard Jenkins .... sound
Peter Miller .... sound
Eric Zeehandelaar .... sound
Camera and Electrical Department
Alexandre Naufel .... set lighting
Editorial Department
H. Scott Randol .... assistant editor (as Howard Randol)
Chris Regan .... color timer
Other crew
Jonathan Dana .... production executive
Andy Goldman .... key artist
Joseph Lee .... production coordinator
Jennifer S. McGonigal .... production coordinator (as Jennifer McGonigal)
Dermott Petty .... production assistant
Glen Tedham .... production coordinator
Tracy Young .... script supervisor
Carlos Saldivia .... production assistant (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
88 min

Did You Know?

Filmmaker Jason Rosette appears briefly in the scene at the student center during the reading of Kerouac's "On the Road".See more »
Movie Connections:
Features Wild for Kicks (1960)See more »


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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful.
Frames Cutting Up Through Time Endlessly: Watching TV, 7 April 2000
Author: DigIt

No comment can make them alive again: they have gone some other place, some other time... Those crazy poets, wonderful wanderers, so human and so divine, so simple and still so far from the ordinary. They are the true spirit of the first pioneers, seeking an unknown unexplored space, inside! To have a glimpse of those gone lands, to scratch the surface of those lost moments, watch this and if you find yourself asking where those Beats have gone, you will find the answer.

The cuts are clean, the time of recollection is brought by silence, between words, between the frames. Very polite, and sincere, almost an apology. The longing remains. Can you still hit the road to enlightenment? No answer is given. And them survivors can still proclaim 'I'm still burning'. Them dead are still dead, their dry mouths wording without sound. The fire has spread, from lamp to lamp, and the trip has now some clear signs along the path. This is the witness bringing testimony to their uncommon greatness. Observe it!

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