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Basquiat

Buena Vista/Miramax; rental pricing
Feature; R
Director: Julian Schnabel
Cast: Jeffrey Wright, Benicio Del Toro, David Bowie, Gary Oldman and Dennis Hopper


Poster: Basquiat
Painter/director Schnabel wrote and directed this sometimes strained but always poignant elegy to his friend, the late artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. Touted as the first major African-American painter, Basquiat rocketed to the forefront of Manhattan's haute '80s art scene, only to die from a drug overdose at age 27. Illuminating and unexpectedly hopeful, the film gleans suberb performances from its eclectic ensemble, especially Wright as the intense young artist and Bowie as an eerie, touching Andy Warhol.


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