10 Oct PULL MY DAISY
PULL MY DAISY
Directors: Robert Frank, Alfred Leslie
Screenplay: Jack Kerouac
Music composed by: David Amram
“The first truly beat film” -Jonas Mekas
It is easy to say that Pull My Daisy is the epitome of “beat generation” cinema. It can also be said that Pull My Daisy was the first film to practice the radical beliefs of “The New American Cinema Group”. After all the historical and analytical nonsense is done, you are still left with a film that is passionate, personal, and most importantly- a film that entertains while expanding your understanding of art and the artist within a movement.
Pull My Daisy is based on the third act of a play written by beat generation mastermind Jack Kerouac untitled The Beat Generation (which was changed because MGM had the copyright to Beat Generation because of a low budget B-movie made by the studio in the late 50’s). The new title was based on a poem written by Kerouac, poet Allen Ginsberg, and Neal Cassady in a be-bop jazz meditation (jazz and meditation- two important aspects of the film!) The film takes place in a New york apartment and never leaves the apartment except in one dream sequence. The cast of characters reads like a who’s who of the beat generation: Allen Ginsberg, Gregory Curso, Peter Orvolosky (all of which retain their real names during the film). The film itself is beautifully narrated by Keroauc with a subtle be bop jazz soundtrack. The cast acts like themselves- substance abusing philosophers who sit in lotus positions contemplating life and art. The story picks up with the entrance of a bishop with his mother and sister. He is an outsider who enters this world of poets and must focus on their neo-buddhist rantings of “is baseball holy…etc.”.
Where other films of “The New American Cinema” seem detached and unaccessible to the public- Pull My Daisy is an honest and almost affectionate portrait of the beat generation. This is the one film (with a possible inclusion of Cassavette’s Shadows) of the movement that expands past the area of modernist-artistic riff-raff and tells a true story that is virtuous and right (yet highly symbolic and leaves the viewer questioning many aspects of life). Pull My Daisy is the shining star of the cannon of “The New American Cinema” and is a film that should forever be preserved for generations of alienated film makers and cinema fans.
PHOTO – from left to right: Larry Rivers, Jack Kerouac, David Amram, Allen Ginsberg, Gregory Corso (with back to camera)
PULL MY DAISY WILL APPEAR IN ITS ENTIRETY, ON THE FORTHCOMING DAVID AMRAM’S – CLASSIC AMERICAN FILM SCORES 1956-2016 ON MOOCHIN’ ABOUT