First-time writer/director and reknowned '80s pop artist Schnabel paints a celluloid portrait of African-American artist Jean Michel Basquiat, who went from grafitti artist to overnight sensation in the mid-1980s before dying of a drug overdose at 27. Schnabel's first-hand knowledge provides details of the painters, the dealers, and the patrons of the whirlwind New York art scene of the time, using an all-star cast (no mean feat on a $3 million budget). Making the move from stage to screen, Wright is an aptly deep and elusive Basquiat and Bowie stands out in a marvelously concevied portrayal of Basquiat's pseudo-mentor, the equally sensational Warhol. Features authentic works of the artists portrayed and some very convincing Basquiat reproductions done by Schnabel.
Miramax Film Corp., 8439 W Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, CA 90069-1921, Phone: (323)650-2937, URL: http://www.miramax.com
Available on VHS
Running time 108 minutes.
Ind. Spirit 1997: Support. Actor (Del Toro).
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