by David Downs
Aficionados of beat literature, indie film, or hawt man-on-man James Franco action are probably going to enjoy the 2010 quasi-documentary Howl. It stars Franco as poet Allen Ginsberg circa 1955, going down on Neal Cassady and going on trial for the obscenity in his landmark poem.
Sometimes funny, sometimes moving and sometimes corny (especially the animated segments) — Howl feels like a tame if entertaining paean to the source material, especially compared to today's movie mores. [With Mad Men's excellent Jon Hamm, Mary Louise-Parker, and Jeff Daniels. Written and directed by Rob Epstein (The Times of Harvey Milk) and Jeffrey Friedman (The Celluloid Closet). Playing on Sunday, June 27, 7:30 p.m. for $25 as part of frameline34 the SF International LGBT Film Festival. Opens in theaters nationwide September 24.