Jesus’ Son

Jesus’ Son

Directed by Alison MacLean

Starring Billy Crudup, Samantha Morton, Dennis Leary

Down on the hard streets of Iowa City, Billy Crudup has little monkey on his back. Blessed with an ability to turn everything he touches to shit, he finds the slightly even more screwed up Michelle (Samantha Morton). Once her boyfriend is shot, they find so much in common – both enjoy sex and shooting up in cheap hotels. Sid and Nancy should have had it so good, and it’s the basis for true romance, even if one or both keep nodding out. We descend into the depths with them, scoring drugs effortlessly and watching their friends drop off one by one. In this tale of disintegration, even the abortion clinic in south 60th in Chicago looks cheery. Drugs aren’t that funny, unless you get to take them yourself, but this otherwise dreary tale has one stellar sequence. Billy gets a job as a hospital orderly (mostly so he can steal pills) and one night a guy wanders into he ER with a hunting knife stuck into his eye. And brain. And whatever else he has in there. Who brought him in? No one – it’s only 3 blocks, so he walked. It was a nice night.

As heroin movies go, this one is less upbeat than most. And just as serious dopers wander in a world of disconnected thoughts and altered priorities, MacLean takes us into a strange world that often leave you wondering “What the f?”. The asterisks aren’t for civility, they actually appear in your head. It’s that authentic. Crudup (now there’s a name I’d change before entering SAG) comes over as the nice but useless guy you remember from PS 369 and Samantha Morton has that innocent sexuality that makes her red and yellow striped panties a true dirty old man fantasy. Strong supporting actors from Dennis Hopper to Holly Hunter can’t bring focus to this rambling tale, but in the end you know that dopers can find there own way straight and Mennonites sometimes enjoy voyeurism. I was uplifted, even though if all this work screwed with my high.

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