27 April 2013

The Living End (1992)

The Living End (1992)

Director: Gregg Araki
Writer: Gregg Araki Genres: Comedy, Drama
Country: USA Language: English Year: 1992 Duration: 92 min

Stars: Mike Dytri, Craig Gilmore, Mark Finch

The Living End is a 1992 film by Gregg Araki. Described by some critics as a "gay Thelma and Louise," the film is an early entry in the New Queer Cinema genre. The Living End was nominated for a Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival in 1992.
Luke is a restless and reckless drifter and Jon is a relatively timid and pessimistic movie critic. Both are gay and HIV positive. After an unconventional meeting, and after Luke kills a homophobic police officer, they go on a road trip with the motto "Fuck everything."

"The Living End" is Gregg Araki's 1992 film. It stars Mike Dytri as Luke and Craig Gilmore as Jon.
The film opens up stating that it's "an irresponsible film by gregg araki." Indeed.
The story surrounds Jon, a writer/movie critic, who unwillingly picks up Luke, an openly gay hustler/drifter. Luke is a hedonistic, free spirit, set on the idea that the world is a "big confusing place," as he graffiti's "I blame society." Jon is more cautious and reserved. They both are HIV positive, and both soon realize they have nothing to lose. They go on a reckless journey together, and we as viewers watch as they become yin/yang to one another.
This film is part soft-porn, part dread/angst, but we're not left scared- just oblivious and lost, like the characters. Along with a great soundtrack, Araki knows how to decorate his films. From posters and bumper stickers to graffiti and advertisements, Araki keeps you dazzled in the background while the story is going on. The placement of objects all seem to have a purpose, as if within each scene he's trying to send a message (such as the scene where he places plants among objects of technology). There's also plenty of classic one-liners and quotes: "Live fast, Die young, Leave a beautiful corpse."
Araki is known for his controversial film style, and perhaps that's why his films remain so underrated. Still, this is the best gay love story I've seen on screen, even beating the moving but dull "Brokeback Mountain." "The Living End" is moving but it's anything but dull. Araki creates stories then sets them on fire when he films them. I recommend this movie to anyone, gay or straight, not to mention Araki's other films.
"Fuck the World!"
Writen by Lucy Tonic

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