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Kill Your Darlings (2013)

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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 20,844 users   Metascore: 65/100
Reviews: 60 user | 183 critic | 36 from Metacritic.com

A murder in 1944 draws together the great poets of the beat generation: Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac and William Burroughs.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Professor Steeves
Brenda Wehle ...
Permissions Librarian
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Businessman
Lenore Harris ...
DA Secretary
Mark Ethan ...
Campus Guard
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Luke Detiweler
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Storyline

In the early 1940s, Allen Ginsberg is an English major at Columbia University, only to learn more than he bargained for. Dissatisfied by the orthodox attitudes of the school, Allen finds himself drawn to iconoclastic colleagues like Lucien Carr, William S. Burroughs and Jack Kerouac. Together, this gang would explore bold new literary ideas that would challenge the sensibilities of their time as the future Beat Generation. However, for all their creativity, their very appetites and choices lead to more serious transgressions that would mark their lives forever. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A true story of obsession and murder


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexual content, language, drug use and brief violence | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

19 September 2013 (Croatia)  »

Also Known As:

Amores asesinos  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$53,452 (USA) (18 October 2013)

Gross:

$1,029,949 (USA) (21 February 2014)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Some library scenes were filmed at the New York Academy of Medicine. See more »

Goofs

Jack Kerouac, upon his arrest, contacts his father and we hear an American accent on the line. Kerouac's parents were French-speaking Quebecois and it took Jack until his late teens to fully master English, which he spoke with a slight Qu├ębec lilt; it is thus unlikely his father and he would have spoken in English, much less in a General American accent. See more »

Quotes

Allen Ginsberg: [Ginsberg has just met William S Burroughs] Is he a criminal?
Lucien Carr: He wishes he were.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Film 2015: Episode dated 3 December 2013 (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Gimme Some Skin, My Friend
Written by Gene de Paul, Red Mack and Don Raye
Performed by The Andrews Sisters
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User Reviews

 
'The New Vision': The Beginnings of the Beat Generation
5 April 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Director and co-writer (with Austin Bunn) John Krokidas have created an atmospheric visit to the beginnings of one of literary history's great movements – the Beat Generation – and in doing so have carved a fine story that combines not only the rise of the Beats but also examines the slow emergence of recognition of sexual identity crises, in both a positive and a critical manner. Cast with a group of very fine actors and accompanied with musical director Nico Muhly's sensitive score that includes the references to Brahms symphonies and trios and transcriptions of themes along with terrific excerpts from Harlem's jazz scene (courtesy of Dawn Newman as a jazz singer), this film is successful on many levels, not the least of which is the reminder of the permanent impact on American literature and sociology imprinted by the likes of Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, and William Burroughs. The very sensitive opening sequence, appreciated only at film's end, sets the dark tone of the film and opens the window to understanding the Beats (also called "the Libertine Circle" by Ginsberg).

The time is the mid 1940s and Allen Ginsberg (Daniel Radcliff) is an English major in Columbia University, assigned to be the roommate of Lucien 'Make me cry or make me horny' Carr (Dane DeHann) who awakens Ginsberg's rebellious self and introduces him to the work of Rimbaud. Dissatisfied by the orthodox attitudes of the school, Ginsberg finds himself drawn to iconoclastic colleagues like the egotistical but genius Lucien Carr, William S. Burroughs (Ben Foster) and Jack Kerouac (Jack Huston). Together, this gang would explore bold new literary ideas that would challenge Columbia University's staid stance and the sensibilities of their time as the future Beat Generation. However, for all their creativity, their very appetites and choices lead to more serious transgressions that would mark their lives forever. Lucien has been stalked since age 14 by the older gay David Kammerer (Michael C. Hall) who sees Lucien as his lover, but in this version of the story Lucien acted out his same sex proclivities with both Ginsberg and Kerouac. Lucien murders Kammerer and drags his body into the Hudson River (recall the opening scene of the film) and it is the advice of both Kerouac and Burroughs that leads to the judgment of the questionable verdict. Ginsberg goes on to create 'Howl' and Kerouac moves toward 'On the Road' and Carr becomes a journalist. Despite the at times confusing dichotomy between the murder story and the literary awakening the Beats introduced, this is a fascinating depiction of a movement of enormous impact.

John Krokidas captures all the essence of the times in the 1940s New York City and his actors – especially Daniel Radcliff – bring this story to life. There is an uncredited role of Lucien Carr's mother superbly played by Kyra Sedgwick and any number of other fleeting bit parts that add to the mystique of the period. Recommended on many levels.


9 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
5/10: Disappointing, unbalanced and Radcliffe STILL can't act . . . tkksilvergun
Unfair and One Sided Portrayal of Carr nellygrl
kudos to Ben Foster . . . onebluesky-1
Does Dane.. Casimira
EXCITED FOR THIS AND Teeheehee gracani122
Chris Evans will murder the essence of Kerouac...period petermarshfilms
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