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Not an adaptation of the novel, more an infusion of the semiotics of Burroughs' work into a distinctly Cronenbergian surrealist biopic of Burroughs' life. A stellar companion piece to Videodrome, which feels very much like a stylistic precursor to this entry in David Cronenberg's filmography.
Why doesn't the library have this film available? It's a classic, based on a work of classic Beat literature, by a brilliant Canadian director.
Not a film for everyone but a super study of the author William Burroughs, as it succeeded to deliver the substance in the book "Naked Lunch" along with other elements in Burroughs' "crazy" world.
Naked Lunch is chronic movie-time constipation at its most anally painful.
It's when you stop to consider that one of the main characters in Naked Lunch is, in fact, a "talking" sphincter (it's true), that the situation gets unintentionally comical. It's especially when this babbling butt-hole and Bill (Peter Weller) are engaged in one of their many screwy conversations that this film loses its grip on reality.
I mean, what in the hell are you supposed to say to a sphincter? Go ahead! Try talking to your own sometime and see what kind of a response you inevitably get from it.
And, of course, of all the lopsided-minds in this world, it took the most whacked-out one of them all (director, David Cronenberg) to bring Naked Lunch to the big screen.
Any idiot with half a brain in his head could have told this nut (which I'm sure they did) that the William Burroughs' novel of the same name was impossible to film.
Right from the start Naked Lunch is absolutely nonsensical to the nth degree, which makes it right on par with the Burroughs' novel.
The story runs off in so many different tangents, seemingly all at once, that it will make your poor, little head spin-spin-spin. I'd confidently say that you'd probably have more luck getting a clear story just talking to your own sphincter, rather than try to piece together Naked Lunch's rectal-mess.
Bravo, Cronenberg! You can have your Naked Lunch, and eat it, too!
This film is a great visual fantasy excursion into a writer’s drug induced hallucinatory world. Peter Weller, Judy Davis, Ian Holm and the rest of the cast all do an excellent job as well. The Criterion edition DVD that I watched had a bonus feature on the making of the film. Apparently Burroughs was on the set a lot and was quite happy with what Cronenberg was doing, even when he departed significantly from his own book. The colorful visuals in the film along with the terrific special effects made it an extremely entertaining film despite the perversity of the story which was, fortunately, mitigated by Cronenberg’s light and satiric approach to the subject matter.
Trippy movie. If you like Scifi and poetic descriptions this is your kind of movie. I enjoyed this more than Holy Motors.
"Superfluous dialog"? At what point exactly. The entire film could be viewed as entirely superfluous given it has no distinct plot, which is probably due to the fact that it's based on the book by William S. Burroughs (who is known for his heroin-induced literary work). This isn't a film for mainstream crowds expecting Harry Potter or Transformers; this is a deeply visceral experience. This film will either make you feel awkward, confused, disgusted, or a combination of the three. That being said, it's not for everyone. People who have a taste for indie films might get something out of this. Otherwise, approach with an open mind.
Distasteful, boring in spots, too much superfluous dialog. I would not recommend for these reasons.
A unique cinematic vision, and very successfully brought off. I don't mind movies changing the books, but there are a few changes here that I think are regrettable but the movie more than compensates. Weller does a remarkably good job.