Friday, April 24, 2009

My Favorite Movie Scenes of All Time - Basquiat

SPOILER ALERT - This scene occurs very late in the film.

Two of my favorite painters of the 1980's are Julian Schnabel and Jean Michel Basquiat. Schnabel's directorial debut was Basquiat, an elegy to the far too brief life of Jean Michel Basquiat. An incredible cast of actors came together, working at reduced fees to help get this film made. Dennis Hopper, Christopher Walken, Benicio Del Toro, Michael Wincott, Parker Posey, Gary Oldman, and Claire Forlani all lend their services here, but it's David Bowie as Andy Warhol that is that steals every scene he is in,both funny and poigiant simultaneously. Jeffery Wright is absolutely mesmerizing as Basquiat - complex and beautiful.

Schnabel painted all of the works for this film which is nothing short of herculean. If you haven't seen this film, get it, it's required viewing for anyone who likes Basquiat, Schnabel, Bowie, art in general, good music, or just good filmmaking.

BTW - as someone noted on youtube, watch at the 2:58 mark where the camera pans down from the World Trade Center to Basquiat, who is clopping along in shoes with "Titanic" written on them. Fascinating.