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Cool World

Friday, August 17, 2012
9:05 p.m. Drugstore Cowboy
Gus Van Sant (U.S., 1989)

Archival Print!
Watch the trailer


There’s something about Matt Dillon that exudes trouble. He’s either feelin’ it, or stirrin’ it. From the teen rec center in Over the Edge to the wrecked teens at the center of Rumble Fish, Dillon captured the troubled yearning of youth. Drugstore Cowboy is mature Matt. Here, he’s leader of the pack, jacking pharmacies with a gang of dopers determined to dose it up and drag it down. Gus Van Sant’s breakthrough feature has a grimy sheen, the patina of addled highs, which powerfully convey its medicated milieu. And Dillon: can he marshal the moxie to detox? Look for a cameo by that King of Cool, William Burroughs.

—Steve Seid

• Written by Van Sant, Daniel Yost, based on the novel by James Fogle. Photographed by Robert Yeoman. With Matt Dillon, Kelly Lynch, James LeGros, Heather Graham. (104 mins, Color, 35mm, From UCLA Film and Television Archive, permission Lions Gate)