October 27, 2009
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This documentary takes the viewer back to Lawrence Ferlinghetti's cabin and to the Beat haunts of San Francisco and New York City for an unflinching, cinematic look at the compelling events the book is based on.
The story unfolds in several synchronous ways: through the narrative arc of Kerouac's prose, told in voice-over by actor and Kerouac interpreter, John Ventimiglia (of HBO's The Sopranos); through first-hand accounts and recollections of Kerouac's contemporaries, whom many of the characters in the book are based on such as Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Carolyn Cassady, Joyce Johnson and Michael McClure; by the interpretations and reflections of writers, poets, actors and musicians who have been deeply influenced by Kerouac's unique gifts like Tom Waits, Sam Shepard, Robert Hunter, Patti Smith, Aram Saroyan, Donal Logue and S.E. Hinton.
The film also features stunning, High Definition visual imagery set to original music composed and performed by recording artist Jay Farrar of Son Volt, with additional performance by Benjamin Gibbard of Death Cab for Cutie.