STARRING: Peter Weller, Judy Davis, Ian Holm,
Julian Sands, Roy Scheider, Monique Mercure, Nicholas Campbell,
Michael Zelniker, Robert A. Silverman, Joseph Scorsiani
1991, 115 Minutes, Directed by: David Cronenberg
Naked Lunch, William S. Burroughs' hallucinatory, "unfilmable" novel is
finally realized on-screen by director David Cronenberg. Part-time exterminator
and full-time drug addict Bill Lee (Peter Weller) plunges into the nightmarish
netherworld of the Interzone, pursuing a mysterious project that leads him to
confront sinister cabals and giant talking bugs. —
Burroughs has always been considered unfilmable. He is, after
all, well-known for his "cut-up" technique which
basically involves physically cutting each page of your novel
into four pieces and then randomly sticking them together again!
And then there's the subject matter: S&M, black-humored
satire, ultra-violence and gay sex, to mention but a few - all
seen through the prism of a heroin drug-induced trip. What can I
say? His stuff is great!
how does it translate to the big screen? Well, if there is anyone
who can do it, it has to be Canadian director David (The Fly, Videodrome, Dead
Ringers) Cronenberg who is obsessed with the bizarre and grotesque. And
surprisingly this film pulls few punches, remaining very true to Burroughs's
intentions. There is even a scene in which Peter Weller stumbles unto his best
friend making love to his wife on a couch while another good friend is busy
reciting Satanist poetry. Weller doesn't seem to mind . .
you haven't decided by now whether you want to see this film or
not, then don't. I'm still getting flak for renting this video -
and that's about more than eight years ago!