Bob and his friends Dianne, Rick and Nadine have been drug addicts for years and live from one high to the next. Gus Van Sant attempts to show an intimate look into the lives of heroin addicts with his film Drugstore Cowboy.
Gonna let my Scenic Routes column do the heavy lifting here, because this film's awesomeness is rooted in minutiae and thus very hard to articulate in a drive-by format. Everything's in flawless sync: the quartet of pitch-perfect performances (especially Kelly Lynch, who makes Diane the epitome of empathetic self-interest); Fogle's episodic, non-judgmental, enthrallingly detailed portrait of the junkie life; Van Sant's blend of the ethereal and the mundane, featuring inventive use of double exposure alongside blunt, unforgiving inserts; superbly evocative Portland locations; Robert Yeoman's ability to make even interiors look overcast; Max Perlich's rat face; William S. Burroughs' stentorian death drawl. Even the color of the opening titles is perfect*. I always deflate a little when Bob decides to…
I'm not really sure what I was expecting in Drugstore Cowboy, but I can guarantee you it wasn't what I got. Matt Dillon is basically playing himself here (as he always seems to be?) as the cute and charming asshole. He creates a raggedy band of thieves, who come to resemble a pretty fucked up but tight-nit family. They go around robbing drug stores to feed their own addictions and to try and sell some of the drugs they steal. It's a period piece set in the 1960's but it's pretty difficult to tell. At least for me it was.
This is one of the few drug movies that doesn't rely on pity from the audience to make it work.…
It is difficult to make a film about the lifestyle of society’s outsiders without any sense of either revulsion or romanticization. The problem is exacerbated with films dealing with drug abuse and addiction, which is still condemned in American society more often than examined with any sociological concern for the actual attendant lifestyle of especially long-term drug users. The question of just how junkies live their lives has however long been an issue in so-called Beat literature inspired in particular by the life and ethos of William S. Burroughs, who true to form makes a deathly appearance in Drugstore Cowboy as the epitome of what the film considers a lifestyle choice. To be both somewhat objective and simultaneously tender is…
A surprisingly decent early Gus Van Sant film where he starts to show signs of his talent in direction. The acting is wonderful, the plot for such a theme is reasonably good and the direction is stylish and attractive. Nice effort and the perfect film to start with Gus Van Sant. Recommendable also for any drug-related film fan.
This is just an intimate view of the life of an addict, never judging, never justifying, but still carrying a strong message.
Gus Van Sant's "Drugstore Cowboy" is kind of a perfect movie. Van Sandt's direction is so lean and fast, it doesn't allow an opportunity for missteps. Matt Dillon has never been better than he is here.
Drugs. I’ve seen a lot of movies on the subject of drugs and addiction. The Basketball Diaries, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, and The Doors are all interesting and hallucinogenic looks into the lives of real-life addicts that I would recommend to those interested in the subject. But as much as I enjoy those movies, they don’t hold a candle to Gus Van Sant’s Drugstore Cowboy.
Based on the novel by James Fogle, who based it off of his actual experiences. In 1971, life-long doper, Bob Hughes (Matt Dillion) and his “family” which includes his wife, Diane (Kelly Lynch), his “muscle” Rick (James LeGros), and his runaway girlfriend Nadine played by a pre-Boogie Nights Heather Graham. Together they all…
I can't explain why, but this film did kind of age.
Maybe because I saw it after Requiem for a Dream, and no drug film can match that film.
Or maybe because times have changed.
Maybe when this film came out it was the first to show needles going in the arm, the state of addicts. Its just that today this is nothing new.
This does not mean the film is not good.
It is good, even considering that it is not revolutionary.
Matt Dilon (Bob Hughes) is as good as always, and Kelly Lynch was also good in her performance.
The story is nice, showing…
A realistic road movie about a drug addict, his 'family', and their inevitable decline into crime. - IMDB
While watching this it totally felt like a drama that could be made and released nowadays. Clearly, Gus Van Sant was ahead of his time. It had touches of 1989 all the way through but the way it played out, I would have been happy to have watched this in the cinema in 2013.
If anything, it doesn't really have a rewatchable factor for me, but it's a good movie to have under the belt all the same. A good job from Matt Dillon, but I would have liked to see a lot more raw emotion that comes with a life in drugs. A bit more anger towards the events that unfolded too.
Watch this once.
Doesn't quite exist outside of the year 1989.
Insightful, very funny, riveting, credible, refreshingly objective (non-preachy) film about drug life slows down towards the end (author William S. Burroughs’ cameo is a drag). Matt Dillon is very charismatic as the superstitious, inventive drug thief.
So i heard really good things about this movie,i heard it was one of Gus Van Sant best works,and that made me curious,so i gave it a chance.
Drugstore Cowboy is directed by Gus Van Sant and it stars Matt Dillon, Kelly Lynch, James Le Gros and Heather Graham.
And i was just expecting this movie to be fine,but i actually a pretty good movie,it was better than i expected.
This is even more impressive,if we think that this was only the second feature movie that Gus Van Sant did,he shows here maturity,and talent.
But he isn't the only talent in this movie,the acting here is also great,Matt Dillon gives here one of the best performances of his career playing…
Bob (Dillon) leads a group of four drug users (including Heather Graham, fresh off an early film with the two Coreys) who get their fixes by robbing apothecaries, pharmacies, hospitals and other such drug stores. But as situations escalate, Bob decides that going clean might be the best thing for him, even if he finds that it’s hard to leave his old life behind.
This is a film so good, I can’t believe that Gus Van Sant didn’t ruin it. Sure, he tries, with silly effects and random gimmicks thrown in to keep us Van Sant detractors on our toes, but manages to back himself off enough to let the actors actually do their work. What a pleasant surprise. (Probably…
I didn't get a lot out of this movie. I suppose it was suppose to be a character piece since the plot was very thin, but his character didn't interest me either. And for what plot there was, some things bugged me, such as the main guy getting stuck in a hotel because there just happened to be a sheriff's convention there, and also that they were able to store a body in the crawl space of the hotel room, despite there being no such thing. (Imagine if you could hide people or things up there.) Also, the trope of the detective who follows the criminal around works better for a murder case, not a guy who robs pharmacies.
Weird soundtrack, too.