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Book-to-Movie Night: Naked Lunch
January 30, 2022 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm CET
Our monthly movie night is back with a film you might not totally understand but surely won’t soon forget!
Naked Lunch (sometimes The Naked Lunch) is a 1959 novel by American writer William S. Burroughs. The book is structured as a series of loosely connected vignettes. Burroughs stated that the chapters are intended to be read in any order. The reader follows the narration of junkie William Lee, who takes on various aliases, from the U.S. to Mexico, eventually to Tangier and the dreamlike Interzone. The vignettes (which Burroughs called “routines”) are drawn from Burroughs’ own experiences in these places and his addiction to drugs: heroin, morphine and, while in Tangier, majoun (a strong hashish confection), as well as a German opioid with the brand name Eukodol (oxycodone), of which he wrote frequently.
The novel was included in Time ’s “100 Best English-language Novels from 1923 to 2005”. In 1991, David Cronenberg directed a film of the same name based on the novel and other Burroughs writings.
In Cronenberg’s imagining, blank-faced bug killer Bill Lee (Peter Weller) and his dead-eyed wife, Joan (Judy Davis), like to get high on Bill’s pest poisons while lounging with Beat poet pals. After meeting the devilish Dr. Benway (Roy Scheider), Bill gets a drug made from a centipede. Upon indulging, he accidentally kills Joan, takes orders from his typewriter-turned-cockroach, ends up in a constantly mutating Mediterranean city and learns that his hip friends have published his work — which he doesn’t remember writing. Strange, maddening, and at times incomprehensible, Naked Lunch is nonetheless an engrossing experience.
The screening will start at 19:00 and have a 20-minute intermission.
(recommended donation 100kc, reservations suggested)