Last Days

Rated R 2005

Most viewers will enter the theater fully aware that Gus Van Sant's new film is "inspired by" the 1994 suicide of Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain. More observation than character study, Last Days doesn't try to get into the head of its existentially angst-ridden protagonist. Rather, it's an elliptical rendering of the final hours in the troubled life of grunge musician Blake (Michael Pitt, who has dropped the annoying posturing that has marred so many of his earlier performances). He walks in the woods, cooks macaroni and cheese, writes music, avoids friends, and ignores the ringing telephone. Although it doesn't set out to answer any questions or dispel any mysteries, the film is less emotionally cold than just kind of neutral. Given the absence of such customary cinematic conventions as story line and character development, it shouldn't be half as engrossing as it turns out to be.

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Last Days

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