For a project that spiked my interest from the start of production, it has taken me an strangely lengthy time to in fact get around to watching Kill Your Darlings. I can trace my fascination with the Beat Generation very specifically, to the point that I suppose I have to thank the casting director of Chronicle for bringing the literary movement into my life, by casting Dane DeHaan as Andrew Detmer.* Let me elaborate...
In February 2012 Chronicle was released and Dane DeHaan impressed me to the point that I knew I would follow him as an actor because, wherever his career took him, it was sure to be interesting. So to IMDb I went and saw that Dane was set to be starring in a movie called Kill Your Darlings alongside Daniel Radcliffe. In order to add some detail to a blog post I was composing on the upcoming film, I engaged in some preliminary and very rudimentary research into just which real life people the various actors were supposed to be depicting. At this point I had never heard of the Beat Generation, let alone any of the authors or works.
But I did like the thought that in the early 1940's there was a gang of young intellectuals running around New York and Columbia University reading classic literature, creating a New Vision, dabbling in banned substances and consuming plenty of liquor.
|Kerouac and Burroughs|
In the past three years since then, I have been reading within this literary movement and can't imagine a time when I didn't know about all it has brought to me. Ginsberg's poetry. On The Road, Big Sur, The Sea is My Brother, Maggie Cassidy by Kerouac. And Burroughs' Junky, Naked Lunch and The Western Lands. I read all about Neal Cassady and watched any number of films on those men.
|Ginsberg and Kerouac|
Kill Your Darlings is a film that I have been looking forward to since its inception. Not just because it is a film about all those cherished favourites of mine. But because it was my research into KYD that made them become said cherished favourites.
|Burroughs, Ginsberg and Carr. I love this photograph.|
Not sure why I felt the need to share this with you prior to my review, but I thought it would set the scene. I can't imagine coming at this film blind with no prior knowledge, but I wonder if I would have enjoyed it so thoroughly if I didn't know what happened during the film and hadn't known the literary figures that they would one day become... A review will follow shortly.
*I have done some research, and Ronna Kress, I thank you for your inspired casting of Dane DeHaan as it has indirectly set me off on a great literary adventure.
|Lou and Ginsy|