Beat: the movie

On Saturday I watched a very curious movie, 2000’s Beat. The film tells the story of Joan Vollmer (played by Courtney Love) and William Burroughs (played by Kiefer Sutherland). The film collides two obsessions of mine, Burrough and Cobain (the two actually met once – Burroughs apparently said of Cobain “There’s something wrong with that boy; he frowns for no good reason“) and it’s strange to watch Love playing Vollmer.

The back of the box doesn’t raise your hopes, promising “As the story unfolds we see that behind every great man or woman there (sic) lives are far from simple“. The film suffers from a poor budget, the New York scenes filmed on very simple sets, all far cleaner than I imagine Vollmer’s real life appartment would have been. The film also features the worst flashback ever (violins! a knife! slow motion!). On the other hand, Sutherland does a fantastic Burroughs impression and the final sequences are heart-wrenching. I’m not sure how much the film relies on knowing the details of the story, though.

All-in-all, it’s one of the better films I’ve bought for a pound, and far superior to Urban Menace.

If you want to follow what I'm up to, sign up to my mailing list

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *