Yesterday we showed you the trailer for Big Sur, but there were actually two films made in the last two years of Jack Kerouac novels, the other of course being director Walter Salles version of On the Road. The Chron's Mick LaSalle offers up a review that's a lot more positive than a host of others that appeared in December, following the film's narrower release. He says that it's "a movie that, like the book, is episodic and has dips in energy but has more than its share of glory and illumination."

SF Mag's Bennett Cohen is less kind, and says "it's a snooze-fest," and he thinks that the whole reason the release was delayed so long after the original premiere at Cannes was that the movie just kind of sucks.

He also notes there's a whole lot of sex and flesh in the movie, which multiple critics have mentioned, but he highlights a particularly weird gay sex scene that is actually not in the book — LaSalle notes that the screenplay used three different sources, including real life accounts of Kerouac and Neal Cassady's travels outside of the book. The scene features Steve Buscemi as a creepy homosexual who picks up Sal Paradise and Dean Moriarty, and ends up paying Moriarty $20 to fuck him.

Anyway, San Francisco gets some screen time, so there's that. And Bennett admits that there are some great performances to be seen too. "There might be a hole in the center, but there is some stellar acting around the edges. Viggo Mortenson seems to channel William Burroughs, and [Garrett] Hedlund and [Kristen] Stewart give fearless, soul- and body-baring perfomances."

[SF Mag]