Quick-Thoughts: Gus Van Sant’s My Own Private Idaho (1991)

Like a tropical door opening into the melancholy-infested mind of a narcoleptic gay hooker, My Private Idaho uses its protruding language as a vigor in apprehending its statement on how lineage determines us. You can tell Gus Van Sant was not only heavily influenced by Shakespeare’s Henry IV in remarks to its general story beats and theatrical dialogue, but additionally by Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange—I know, here we go again with Evan mentioning this movie for the billionth time; I mean, if men in flashy costumes beating up on poor folks or opposing deviants in the dark didn’t give it away, then I don’t know what will for you. 

From the diverse selection of framing, stylish yet disorderly characters, and a very nostalgic whisks of surreal visuals and editing, My Own Private Idaho seems like the kind of movie I myself would try to make—so there might be a sliver of an edge when it comes to my favoritism for this piece.

Verdict: B+

“My Own Private Idaho” is now available to stream on The Criterion Channel.

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