Like Bonnie and Clyde, Bob and Diane (Matt Dillon and Kelly Lynch, both in career-best performances) were in love and on the run. Instead of robbing banks, however, they traversed the Northwest robbing pharmacies in search of their next fix. With idiosyncratic pacing, clever use of music, and delightfully kitschy '70s period details, Van Sant creates a sharp film that captures the adrenaline rush of stealing, the release of shooting up, and the loneliness of going straight. Drugstore Cowboy ushered in the provocative, edgy new era of independent cinema and remains one of the landmark films of the period. With Heather Graham, James Le Gros, Max Perlich, James Remar, and William Burroughs. 1989, U.S., color, 35mm, 104 minutes.
PRECEDED BY: Junior (1988, 3 minutes) and Four Boys in a Volvo (1996, 4 minutes).
River Phoenix, in his most iconic role, portrays a narcoleptic hustler named Mike who frequently finds himself on the side of a country road, longing for home. He falls in love with fellow hustler Scott (Keanu Reeves), who is slumming with squatters until he inherits his family fortune. Named after the B-52s song and quoting liberally from Shakespeare's Henry IV, My Own Private Idaho reveals Van Sant's promiscuous mixing of periods, genres, and sexualities to heartbreaking, dreamy effect. 1991, U.S., color, 35mm, 102 minutes.
PRECEDED BY: Flea Sings (1991, 2 minutes) and The Discipline of DE (1982, 4 minutes).
GUS VAN SANT: ON THE ROAD AGAIN IS MADE POSSIBLE BY GENEROUS SUPPORT FROM THE REGIS FOUNDATION. PROGRAMMING ASSISTANCE WAS PROVIDED BY THINKFILM.