My Own Private Idaho 1991

Amazon Instant Video

Available in HD
(43) IMDb 7.1/10
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Two best friends living on the streets of Portland as hustlers embark on a journey of self discovery and find their relationship stumbling along the way.

Starring:
James Russo,Keanu Reeves
Runtime:
1 hour, 43 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Drama, Gay, Lesbian & Transgender
Director Gus Van Sant
Starring James Russo, Keanu Reeves
Supporting actors River Phoenix
Studio Warner Bros.
BBFC rating Suitable for 15 years and over
Rental rights 48 hour viewing period. Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Instant Video (streaming online video and digital download)

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Jack on 19 Nov. 2003
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
Not the most uplifting film. I have wanted to see it for a long time but was unable to find it in the local video hire store/library etc. Nor could I find it for sale. So, having waited so long to see it.....
It is a remarkable and moving piece of film. The cinematography is - unusual - in places. The 18 rating seems to be because there is a 'suggestion' and little more of gay (and hetero) sex. Where the more intimate scenes occur they are filmed in a frozen action sequence, but in that somewhat 'hammy' film genre where instead of freeze framing, the actors hold their pose, a little odd. I s'pose the 18 cert is because it went thru the censors in the early 90's so little more was possible.
The story follows Mike as the principal character, played by River Phoenix, who is screwed up from childhood, suffers from narcolepsy (uncontrollable falling into deep sleep)and tries to survive as a rent boy. His co star is Keaneau Reeves who is the badly behaving rich boy. Will he fall in love with Mike, as Mike declares his love for him? or not?
The ending - it's ambiguous!
Worth watching, worth owning but don't expect a feel good factor.
Good reflection of the mid Western States though I think, from my experience.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Steve Kay on 24 July 2008
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This film is a surreal character study, following the misfit lives of a small group of 20 something rent boys. It's a strange sort of film. I have never seen anything else quite like this. The best way to give you a better impression of what I mean is to say that it shares some parallels with Oliver Twist, if the Oliver character was older and gay, if his workhouse was really a brothel where he squatted illegally and where Fabien is really his pimp.

I first saw this film when I was far too young to understand what any of it was about. But, somehow, it made a big impression on me. So, I looked this film up not so long ago to check it out and to see if it left me with the same feelings as it did before.
I found it kind of sad, it's strange, because I find it heart warming and yet some how heart breaking. Sweet yet bitter!

We see the late River Phoenix playing the Oliver typed role, led by his very own Artful Dodger in the form of a young Keanu Reeves.
I was originally touched by the close friendship that they seemed to share. It seemed one of a real love that transcends sexual attraction.
There is some one-sided attraction going on in there; which the other is well aware of and doesn't mind, and I think that's what originally touched me. The concept of a straight guy being friends with a gay guy that is in love with him and it being a non-issue: A true friendship.
Watching this film again however I have a completely different take on it.
Now, it looks to me as if the whole friendship was just as one sided as the sexual attraction and that makes this film even more sad for me.

The only real plot is that one character is in search for his mother while the other tags along to hide from his father.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By "home_will_be_your_mirror" on 16 Nov. 2001
Format: VHS Tape
This film is, more than anything else, proof of what a great actor River Phoenix truly was. The film itself is very interesting. While the subject matter may seem controversial, the touching and off-beat way in which it is handled by director/writer Gus Van Sant is never exploitive or offensive. It's the sort of film that you'd think could only have been made during that shining era of cinematic daring and innovation, the 1970's. I mean, I can picture it fitting in nicely on a double bill with 'Midnight Cowboy' or 'Taxi Driver' for example. It has that distinctive and independant nature. Surprizingly it's actually from 1991. Nevertheless, it's a fascinating and oddly romantic piece of work. Some scenes work better than others (as is the case with most movies, especially those of the so-called "art house" variety) but it's never anything less than totally unique and quietly touching. Plenty of interesting filmic, philosophical, and artistic ideas presented in an interesting and highly effective manner. There is no use questioning the fact that River Phoenix's intense and heartbreaking performance is the films centrepiece, but the film stands up very well even in the scenes he's not in. This is one of my favourite films of the 1990's and the one that I hope River Phoenix will long be lovingly remembered for.
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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Johnentwistlespout VINE VOICE on 13 July 2006
Format: DVD
Definitely one of those films you either love or hate; it's a surrealist and uncomfortably explicit road movie about rent boys who have Shakespearean pretensions! Those who like their films straight (in both senses of the word) will probably hate every minute, but saying that it does share a sense of humour with "Withnail and I" and that's loved by pretty much everyone, so who knows. The locations and photography are beautiful, music brilliant, characters larger than life and the script (based on Henry IV) full of wit and tragedy. However, one thing outshines the film itself and stays with you long after the final credits...River Phoenix. He died three years later and so, like James Dean (who he resembles here), is frozen forever in full narcoleptic, übercool glory. It's Phoenix's film and he is absolutely superb and should have been considered for an Oscar - in that same year Warren Beatty was nominated for Bugsy. Tragic.
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