THE LAST MOVIE
1971, Arbelos Films, 108 min, USA, Dir: Dennis Hopper

Among the most storied productions of the New Hollywood era, this self-reflexive drama follows a movie crew making a Western in a remote Peruvian village. Director Dennis Hopper stars as the baleful stuntman Kansas, who stays behind after production wraps, hoping to find redemption in the arms of a former prostitute - until local inhabitants take over the abandoned set and begin to stage a ritualistic re-enactment of the film. Given carte blanche by Universal after the tremendous commercial success of EASY RIDER, Hopper set up shop as far from the Hollywood machine as possible, with an on-screen entourage that included Kris Kristofferson, Julie Adams, Peter Fonda, Dean Stockwell, Russ Tamblyn, Michelle Phillips and director Samuel Fuller. Though it effectively ended his career for many years, Hopper’s THE LAST MOVIE remains thrillingly innovative and remarkably contemporary, influenced greatly by the work of Bruce Conner and the French New Wave, as well as the Pop and Abstract artists revered by the writer-director-star. The film has been newly restored in 4K from the original camera negative and sound elements.


EASY RIDER
1969, Sony Repertory, 94 min, USA, Dir: Dennis Hopper

Dennis Hopper’s directorial debut is a simultaneous celebration of and elegy to the counterculture. Two lone-wolf bikers (Peter Fonda, Hopper) make a killing on a drug deal and, to commemorate their new financial independence, decide to roll cross-country on a tour of southwestern America. What they find are exhilarating open spaces, free-love communes and people living off the land. But they also find bad acid trips and a mortally dangerous climate of prejudice. Jack Nicholson shot to stardom (as well as receiving numerous awards, including a Supporting Actor Oscar nomination) for his funny, irreverent turn as a misfit alcoholic lawyer in a small Southern town. The collaborative script was by Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper and Terry Southern. With great music by Steppenwolf, Roger McGuinn, Jimi Hendrix and more!


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