Longer Ways to Go Film Series: The Living End
Jun 28, 2017, 6:30pm
The Living End • Gregg Araki • 1992 • Free
One of the earliest entries in the New Queer Cinema genre, The Living End is an angsty, hilarious, and tragic response to the AIDS crisis that takes the tropes of the road movie genre and flips them upside down. The film tells the story of Jon (Craig Gilmore), an introverted film critic whose quiet life is disrupted when, in the space of twenty-four hours, he receives an HIV-positive diagnosis and picks up Luke, a brash, unstable drifter who is also HIV-positive. After a deadly encounter with a homophobic police officer, the pair set out on a nihilistic road trip with the motto “F*** everything.” Looking back, Director Gregg Araki has described The Living End as “irresponsible,” but to Peter Travers of Rolling Stone, the film was a “savagely funny, sexy, and grieving cry,” and it remains a vital statement about its time. Featuring an impeccable ‘90s soundtrack of industrial, post-punk, and shoegaze, with original music by Cole Coonce of Braindead Soundmachine.