Jack is caught with the wife of his employer, a Vegas thug. The thug sends goons after Jack, who convinces his best friend, Pilot, to flee with him. Pilot insists that they head for Seattle... See full summary »
The name of the actor who plays John Lennon, Mark Lindsay Chapman, is similar to that of Lennon's killer, Mark David Chapman. In 1985, Mark Lindsay Chapman was supposed to play John Lennon in the TV movie John and Yoko: A Love Story (1985). But Lennon's widow, Yoko Ono, who was involved in the production, asked that Chapman be replaced in the role. She considered it "bad karma," because Chapman's name was so similar to her husband's killer's name. Actor Mark McGann played Lennon instead in the TV movie. See more »
Mark David Chapman:
I believe in Holden Caulfield. And in the book, and what he was saying, what he was saying to a lost generation of phony people.
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In the credits, all of the people are credited for their characters, however the final listings are as follows: John Lennon..................Mark Lindsay Chapman and Jared Leto See more »
I've read just about every possible comment anyone can make about this film, from stupid, insipid, tasteless trash to slow, minimalist masterpiece of modern cinema. I should come out and say I've loved every performance Jared Leto has ever given, and this appears to be his biggest, boldest effort yet, gaining well over 50 pounds to play the character. Was it a fruitless waste of time and danger of health, or a triumphant success? Only time will tell. Right now the film has been poorly received by critics and masses as a boring and simplified look at a loner WITH a cause. But for me, that lead performance was a celebratory success which transcends all the banal pondering and mundane isolation and delivers a glimpse to the man behind the murder of arguably the most acclaimed musical artist of the 20th century. Any other actor would've portrayed the man as insane and raucous but sympathetic. Leto turns him into something more -- a yearning, indulgent, substandard, pathetic, arrogant, misunderstood, underestimated, and yes, insane man.
Throughout the film we follow Leto as he lives and breathes every minute of New York City before he slowly begins to drown beneath the pressures of his own social awkwardness and the surrounding annoyance of the people trying to behinder his one dream... receive an autograph from John Lennon. The film develops an atmosphere where his optimism resonates an aura of pessimism because his determination is such a futile endeavor and the inevitable aftermath is dragged along with every step he takes. Eventually, this building of tension collapses on itself when he begins to develop a predictably doomed relationship with a New Yorker girl, played well by Lindsay Lohan. It would've felt like a parable of romance were I not already aware of the proceeding outcome. So rather than being heartbreaking, it feels conventional because we know all along that she will leave him to trigger the murder. That's not what I define as ambiguity.
The film also falters with its numerous long-running narrative soliloquies which turn surreal and sometimes descend into obvious lyricism. He spends much of the film discussing his social isolation, his desperation, complaining about the banalities of his life, and his feelings of homesick. Instead of feeling insightful, they feel dreary, Like I'm reading an old man's diary rather than entering the mind of a psychopath. But what maintains the key intrigue behind all the mundane babble is the manner of Jay Leto's narration, which always compels me to see beyond the dialogue and take a long hard glimpse at a man who has something to say but doesn't how to say it sanely, who wants to express himself but can never sum up the right words to explain why he seems so obsessive-compulsive and antisocial without coming across as one or the other. I almost (*almost*) feel like I could relate to him because Leto's vigorous and dynamic performance was just such a human touch.
And now, the climax of the film. The whole shebang of wandering, outbursts, and epiphanies all lead to the killing of John Lennon itself. We witness the events leading up to Leto's convincing final transformation through flashy editing and blaring music as he pulls out his gun and shoots the man down whilst he walks drunkenly to the entrance of his hotel. The film ends as he's arrested and forced into a police car.
There's little exploitation in this film, except maybe during its final scenes. It tries to be slow and intelligent and begins to feel obnoxiously pretentious. That fabulous performance really deserved some sort of Oscar recognition, it's a rare and pure and beautiful depiction of obsessive admiration. His performance pretty much exceeds his own characterization, a stunning achievement because he's in pretty much every shot of the film.
But what did we all learn from this movie? We didn't learn much at all, actually, we were merely given a different perspective to challenge our prevailing thoughts of the event. While sometimes it feels overtly sympathetic and sometimes just simply pondering, I do believe its outstanding performance conquers my applaud, while little else redeems it as but a sad and slightly sensationalized depiction of the tragedy.
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