To make a debut feature about the birth of beat poetry in America is a bold and risky move. Krokidas scores surprisingly well by looking at the movement not through typewriters and papers but through people and ideologies. Granted, it’s overstylised – yet you enjoy the enthusiasm and confidence throbbing in the film’s DNA.
However, it does fail to maintain its kinetic pace throughout, as well as struggling to provide the secondary characters with any depth.
Nevertheless DeHaan and, especially, Radcliffe are unstoppable, with the latter entirely convincing in his performance without any thoughts twitching to his career-starting wizard.
An electric debut full of energy and style echoing the confidence/competence of a seasoned pro. Radcliffe, DeHaan and Foster all sparkle as we witness the highs and lows of a literary revolution.
CAST: Daniel Radcliffe, Dane DeHaan, Michael C. Hall, Ben Foster, Elizabeth Olsen & Jennifer Jason Leigh
DIRECTOR: John Krokidas
WRITERS: John Krokidas & Austin Bunn
SYNOPSIS: A murder in 1944 draws together the great poets of the beat generation: Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac and William Burroughs.