Naked Lunch [VHS]
A weird, surreal plot inspired by the life and writings of William S. Burroughs. 'Naked Lunch' begins with Burroughs' alter-ego Bill Lee working as an exterminator and running out of bug killer. He finds his wife has been injecting it as a drug, decides to try it for himself and spends the rest of the film taking orders from giant bugs and a talking typewriter. Directed by controversial horror-meister David Cronenberg (The Brood, Crash).
You are now entering Interzone, William S Burroughs' phantasmagorical land of junk, paranoia and crawly things. Best travel advice: "Exterminate all rational thought". In David Cronenberg's superbly shot, unnerving warp on the Burroughs novel, Naked Lunch, the novelist himself becomes a main character (played in an implacable monotone by Peter Weller), with elements from Burroughs' life--including the shooting of his wife during a "William Tell" game, and bohemian friends Kerouac and Ginsberg--added to frame the book's wild visions. This is, ironically, a somewhat rational approach to an unfilmable book (and it makes a hair-curling double bill with Barton Fink, another look at writerly madness, with both films sharing Judy Davis). Cronenberg is a natural for oozing mugwumps and typewriters that turn into giant bugs, of course. But in the end, this is really his own vision of the artistic process, rather than Burroughs' hallucinatory descent into hell. --Robert Horton, Amazon.com --This text refers to the DVD edition.
Top Customer Reviews
Blurring the line between reality and drug-induced madness, Peter Weller stars as Bill Lee, who goes from using cockroach powder as a drug and taking orders from a giant bug who wants him to kill his wife, the movie does a damn good job of capturing the atmosphere of fear and paranoia that Burroughs communicated.
Fleeing to Morocco, he takes orders from his typewriter and a 'mugwump', writing reports for his handler and thinking himself a secret agent under the influence of the 'black meat' and roaming around the Tangiers sampling the local drugs and gay scene.
It's every bit as dark as the book and Weller's deadpan delivery is perfectly suited to the crazy poetic passages taken more or less directly from it, like the man who teaches his backside to talk. Weller as Lee, and Ian Holm as the expat writer, Frost, show the struggles of writing a novel as undergone by Burroughs, arguing the merits of different typewriters and the virtues of the local drugs, and how these improve the final published work.
Both the visuals and the dialogue will make a big and lasting impression-it's Kafkaesque, haunting and crazy, though compelling throughout.
Good solid acting through and Peter Weller plays an excellent part despite the madness of the script (not a bad thing) and seems to keep a grip on whets going on even if the viewer is totally lost. The rest of the cast do very well including the talking cockroaches and type writers)
This is where it is a hard movie to review, if you like these types of films then it would be considered 5 stars if you like a more traditional film with an easy to understand plot you will not.
I think part of the plot is about not understanding what is going on as Peter Weller descends into madness and enters a bizarre sense of reality. I would also have to point out that it differs totally from the book.
My own personal opinion is that this is an excellent and very well made film. I say it's a solid 4 stars.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
great value steelbook cheaper than standard cover graet film cheers.Published 8 days ago by Amazon Customer
Naked Lunch, dvd film based on William Burroghs novel and directed for Cronember is a beautiful film... very good actors and climax.
Excellent...!!! Read more
Amazing quality and works fine on UK Blu-ray players. German edition (menu's in german) but film in original English language and subtitles can be turned off. Read morePublished 7 months ago by silentcolours
Load of old cobblers from David Cronenberg; after what was a distinguished career. Peter Weller stars as the writer in a dark one-hander that has neither plot nor characters. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Dan Smith