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 (email@example.com)
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 Québec lilt; it is thus unlikely his father and he would have spoken in English, much less in a General American accent. See more »
[reading his poem]
Be careful, you are not in Wonderland. I've heard the strange madness long growing in your soul, in your isolation but you fortunate in your ignorance. You who have suffered find where love hides, give, share, lose, lest we die unbloomed.
Allen, that was beautiful, kid.
You wrote that?
You asked me to.
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The first part of the end credits run over the top of photographs of the real Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, Lucien Carr and William S. Burroughs. See more »
My review of Kill Your Darlings may be heavily bias because I have read everything I can get my hands on about the relationship between Ginsberg and Carr and I am a beat fan before almost many things. However, this film examines Ginsberg (Daniel Radcliffe) before he began his literary revolution and the character is one I found easy to fall in love with. Radcliffe portrays Ginsberg - with the aid of new comer writer and director John Korkidas - with a playful naive innocence as he approaches love and friendship at Columbia and his relationship between Carr (Dane DeHaan) is believable from the moment you see them in the same scene.
There is an obvious chemistry between DeHaan and Radcliffe that really aids the performance. I have seen this film twice now and upon reflection I enjoyed how the sexuality of the characters was not places heavily on screen despite the homosexuality of Ginsberg being a very key aspect of the films script. The sexual tension between Ginsberg and Carr was handled very well and I was never not intrigued by the compelling dynamic between the two and, if anything, by the end of the film was more curious about the relationship than I was when I walked into the theater.
Jack Huston and Ben Foster give amazing performances despite their lack of character development throughout the film but they never took all of the attention either which I especially enjoyed as it was never a film about just Ginsberg or a film about Kerouac alone as it was about all of the beat writers and the event that begun their revolution as inspirational writers.
Micheal C Hall gives an incredible performance, however, I felt as though I could really see his character of Dexter in the T.V show of the same title shine through his portrayal of Kammerer. This similarity did not hinder the film as a whole but in one particular scene I felt as though I was watching Dexter not Kammerer.
The main theme of the movie revolves around 'A Vision' by William Butler Yeats and his idea of life being circular carries deep within viewers as they watch Ginsberg's life 'widen'. This film is a must see for any of you who love the beats or those of you who are inspired by indie films about deeply buried tales.
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