by Anonymous: ... Yeah, it's based on one of them there Shakespeare plays that the woke have decided should not be put in front of teens. My Own Private Idaho Related. This classical British actor made his career from bringing the… 1 of 1 found this relevant Relevant? Reeves and others soon joined, and the place became an almost nonstop house party with jam sessions every night. Any would-be filmmaker can tell you how nerve-racking it is to meet with potential producers and then wait to hear back about whether they're going to make your movie. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. His lyrical vision of a narcoleptic America exposes the seduction and danger of its resonant myths -- the way they distort reality and mask the real dynamics of social distress. My Own Private Idaho is a 1991 American independent adventure drama film written and directed by Gus Van Sant, loosely based on Shakespeare's Henry IV, Part 1, Henry IV, Part 2, and Henry V. The story follows two friends, Mikey Waters and Scott Favor, played by River Phoenix and Keanu Reeves respectively, as they embark on a journey of personal discovery that takes them from Portland, Oregon to Mike's hometown in Idaho, and then to Rome in search of Mike's mother. Richert was offended by the suggestion, telling Phoenix, "It's a big fat pederast. For another thing, he wrote it in a poetic, non-standard typographical format—words down the middle of the page, random capitalization, etc. (Parker wasn't narcoleptic, though another friend of Van Sant's was.) queer cinema INTRODUCTION MY OWN PRIVATE IDAHO AND NEW QUEER CINEMA SCOTT/MIKE AND HENRY/ CONCLUSIONS bibliography Queer Theory and Movement “Being queer is not about a right to privacy; it is about the freedom to … Gus Van Sant’s My Own Private Idaho [Henry IV, Parts 1 & 2] (1991). To achieve the effect of magazine cover boys on the newsstand coming to life and talking to each other, Van Sant went old-school. homoerotic friendship. He is befriended by Scott Favor (Keanu Reeves), a rich kid whose father is the mayor of a city, who is slumming to make himself feel alive and test the systems of power that will gladly grant him a privileged position in it. Always gotta be different. Van Sant knew some of the local street kids and had them on set as advisers and extras. MY OWN PRIVATE IDAHO. WR. It is also a buddy/road movie in which one character finds redemption, and the other doesn't. (Red Hot Chili Peppers' Flea was a cast member, after all; he and Reeves played bass while Phoenix played a guitar he picked up at a Portland music shop.) Van Sant had just bought a house in Portland's west hills, and he invited Phoenix to stay there instead of a hotel. When I had first watched the film My Own Private Idaho (1991), I was unaware of the specific references to Shakespeare’s Henry IV Parts I and II and Henry V. Categorized and hyped as a queer-road-western film by the press, the Shakespearean element was largely overlooked in favor of the then-shocking reality that beloved teen heartthrob and James-Dean-lookalike River Phoenix was portraying a gay street … When professional actors got involved, Parker was relegated to the ensemble (he plays a hustler named Digger), but he continued to help Phoenix research the role and understand the character. Director Gus Van Sant. male hustler. He has reviewed performances for Shakespeare Bulletin. Gus Van Sant’s complex mixture of various registers of dialogue makes it not that surprising when, a half hour into the film, Bob Pigeon, a latter-day avatar of Falstaff, shows up using a debased version of Shakespearean verse. KR. Offsite Link. The stag statue is somewhere else in Portland, and it's only the stag—the rider we see in the movie is not a statue, but a crew member in makeup! Change ), The Rogue’s Guide to Shakespeare on Film #47: My Own Private Idaho [Henry IV, Parts 1 & 2] (1991) | Tayoulevy's Weblog, The Rogue’s Guide to Shakespeare on Film #48: Haider [Hamlet] (2014) | The Drunken Odyssey, The Curator of Schlock #339: Black Scorpion, Comics Are Trying to Break Your Heart #106: Crafting a Witch’s Story. In the early stages of development, when Van Sant was still thinking as inexpensively as possible, he envisioned using non-actors to play the lead roles. They had to shoot his scenes tomorrow. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. Van Sant was leaving it ambiguous whether either of the hustlers was actually gay. For one thing, it was only 70 pages long, which would translate to about a 70-minute movie. Drama 1991 1 hr 42 min. ( Log Out /  He began to dress and groom himself like a grungy street kid, to the point where he was turned away from a nightclub because the bouncer thought he was a bum. That included Mike Parker, the real Portland street kid on whom Van Sant had based the Mike character. He is haunted by memories of his mother. Is this what you think I should be playing?". Much of the Keanu Reeves character's story comes from this part, complete with occasional Bard-like dialogue and the Falstaff-like character of Bob Pigeon. Could Richert fly up and take the part? Each one was shot separately; in post-production, they were stitched together to make it look like a magazine rack. JR. James Russo Richard Waters. Finally, Phoenix called Richert from the set in Portland and said the actor who'd been hired to play Bob Pigeon had been let go. Pingback: The Rogue’s Guide to Shakespeare on Film #47: My Own Private Idaho [Henry IV, Parts 1 & 2] (1991) | Tayoulevy's Weblog, Pingback: The Rogue’s Guide to Shakespeare on Film #48: Haider [Hamlet] (2014) | The Drunken Odyssey. Sort By: Showing all 268 plot keywords. It got to be such a party, in fact, that Van Sant moved out of his own house and stayed in an apartment downtown. 1. IT FEATURES A PERSON PRETENDING TO BE A STATUE. Not only did Phoenix interview real hustlers (videos are online), but according to friends, he experimented with hard drugs and even dabbled in same-sex shenanigans. In one delightful metafiction scene, the characters of the film appear on the covers of blue boy magazines. Why My Own Private Idaho ? I love My Own Private Idaho; and a lez counterpart to that artsy 90s contemplative type film would be All Over Me. Hans, the odd German man with the intense blue eyes who cavorts with Mike and Scott, was played by Udo Kier, a veteran actor who had about 60 movie credits under his belt then and has added another 60 since. William Richert was a writer and director who'd made A Night in the Life of Jimmy Reardon, in which Phoenix played the title character. ( Log Out /  River Phoenix is a narcoleptic male hooker. It loosely adapts Shakespeare’s “King Henry IV: Part 1” in combination with Orson Welles’s “The Chimes at Midnight.” The main characters of “My Own Private Idaho” loosely parallel the characters of “King Henry IV: Part 1”; Prince Hal is Keanu Reeves’s Scotty Favor. (1989). Scott looks out for Mike, whose narcolepsy makes him especially vulnerable, and throughout this peripatetic story, Scott will try to help Mike find some sort of closure with his mother. “My own private Idaho” is a film that was inspired by Shakespeare’s Henry IV, and no element epitomizes this in the movies as much as Scott’s character does. The film was part of a new wave of gay cinema, and it added to Phoenix's burgeoning reputation as a sensitive, brooding actor, made all the more tragic by his sudden death two years later. by Anonymous: reply 16: Bill Stafford’s music takes the steel guitar of honky tonk music and extends that sweet tang to exotic Hawaiian proportions, defamiliarizing “Home on the Range” and “America the Beautiful,” and that sonic dreaminess combines with some visionary cinematography by John J. Campbell and Eric Alan Edwards that makes the scenery of My Own Private Idaho into an enchanting painting that is alive. But everyone in Hollywood told him a story of gay hustlers was too "niche" to get any traction. 1 of 1 found this relevant Relevant? 1991, Directed by Gus Van Sant. I always know where I am by the way the road looks. In My Own Private Idaho he has expanded both in style and statement. DVD commentary and features. He hung out with hustlers on the streets of Portland, learning the, uh, tricks of the trade. The vulnerability that Mike will have to experience alone is a much deeper matter. John King (Episode, well, all of them) holds a PhD in English from Purdue University, and an MFA from New York University. Yes No. Why, you wouldn’t even look at a clock, unless hours were lines of coke, dials looked like the signs of gay bars, or time itself was a fair hustler in black leather… isn’t that right, dude? Published on January twenty second, 2021 We have picked up 9 all time greatest greatest Shakespeare film variations that truly work effectively on the display screen. What a devil hast thou to do with the time of the day? In this loose adaptation of Shakespeare's "Henry IV," Mike Waters is a gay hustler afflicted with narcolepsy. Yes No. Scott Favor is the rebellious son of a mayor. Worn down, Richert finally relented. Van Sant had three ideas rolling around his head that he smushed into one movie. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your account. My Own Private Idaho (1991) Plot Keywords. The hijinks of this band of miscreants in the jangled aesthetics of Van Sant’s film seems especially appropriate somehow, and perhaps this is what allows us to lose ourselves in the story, and feel closer to its spirit. “My Own Private Idaho” is a 1991 film directed by Gus Van Sant. Yet what is most surprising is not the Shakespearean slumming, but the story of Mike and Scott’s friendship. Trailers. Mike's vision of Scott cradling him … Like, I just know that I've been here before, I just know that I've been stuck here like this one fucking time before, you know that? Leave it to Gus Van Sant to mash up HENRY IV‘s Prince Hal with Portland’s street hustlers. Unless hours were cups of sack and minutes capons and clocks the tongues of bawds and dials the signs of leaping-houses and the blessed sun himself a fair hot wench in flame-coloured taffeta, I see no reason why thou shouldst be so superfluous to demand the time of the day. 2 of 2 found this relevant Relevant? So instead he made Drugstore Cowboy, about a roving band of junkies who rob pharmacies—a premise with more mainstream appeal, apparently. Gus Van Sant’s My Own Private Idaho [Henry IV, Parts 1 & 2] (1991) Gus Van Sant’s My Own Private Idaho is a stylized, Midnight Cowboy esque romp through the gay underworld of the mid-and-north-west. Julius Caesar (I, ii, 140-141) Still he resisted. 2 of 2 found this relevant ... shakespeare's henry iv. RP. My Own Private Idaho (1991) cast and crew credits, including actors, actresses, directors, writers and more. The way Van Sant wrote it, the scene where Mike and Scott sit around a campfire in the desert, where Mike confesses his love for Scott, was a three-page scene with no such declaration. Van Sant includes large chunks of Shakespeare’s Henry plays, as filtered through Orson Wells’ Chimes at Midnight, in My Own Private Idaho. urination. Falstaff, and Bob, are essentially clownish characters. (Some of Shakespeare’s tavern scenes are, truth to be told, a bit stiff.). Laurence Olivier and Shakespeare often go hand in hand. My Own Private Idaho (1991) In this loose adaptation of Shakespeare's "Henry IV," Mike Waters is a gay hustler afflicted with narcolepsy. For some reason, Phoenix became fixated on the idea of Richert playing Bob Pigeon in My Own Private Idaho, even though Richert was not an actor. I think My Own Private Idaho will not touch all viewers because of the Shakespearean vernacular, but if you can play along with the play like aspect of the dialogue, Van Sant offers you a … Just because the Branagh MUCH ADO isn’t American doesn’t mean we can’t have Keanu Reeves! (It looks like this.). The result was so intriguing that he put some of that footage into the film. As a bonus, here’s Kier performing the same song on television in 1985. (He intended the actors to flesh it out with improvisation, which they did.) Curiously, this odd image is seemingly brought to life in Gus Van Sant's My Own Private Idaho (1991), a modern retelling of the Henriad, when the bum Bad George appears late in the film… CONTINUE READING ( Log Out /  (Reeves also did similar research, though not as extensively.) 10 Best Loose Movie Adaptations Of Shakespeare Plays, Ranked He had the magazine covers mocked up on large panels of Plexiglass, then had the actors stand behind them. Prince Hal and Scott’s backgrounds, their relationships with their family and their associations with members of a lower class are all symptomatic of these similarities. After getting some attention with his micro-budget debut, Mala Noche, Van Sant wanted to make My Own Private Idaho next. We are timeless. William Richert Bob Pigeon. yeah. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. ( Log Out /  But according to Van Sant, Phoenix really wanted to beef up the impact of the scene. Excerpted from "LIVING WITH SHAKESPEARE: Essays by Writers, Actors and Directors" I recently created a film called "My Own Private River," which … Together, the two travel from Portland, Oregon to Idaho and finally to the coast of Italy in a quest to find Mike's estranged mother. "He had decided that that scene was his character's main scene and, with Keanu's permission, he wrote it out to say something that it wasn't already saying … It was his explanation of his character.” Now the film became, at least in part, about unrequited love, adding another tragic element to it. 79%. Cast & Crew. Shakespeare’s brash Hal is a gay hustler, but My Own Private Idaho belongs to tender narcoleptic River Phoenix and the vast Western skies. Gus Van Sant’s screenplay is poetic, grotesque, goofy, and seemingly documentarian at times. Fascinated by this side of Kier, Van Sant had him work part of his act into My Own Private Idaho, resulting in the odd moment with a lamp seen in the video above. Along the way, Mike will confess to Scott that he loves him, even though Scott will only have sex for money. Mike Waters (River Pheonix) is a narcoleptic gay hustler traveling the midwest. Van Sant said he found out his producers had committed to making My Own Private Idaho when other filmmakers told him, "Congratulations, they're skipping our film to make yours.”, Mike's vision of Scott cradling him at the foot of a monument called “The Coming of the White Man” takes some creative liberties. 17+ Starring River Phoenix, Keanu Reeves, James Russo. Scott is based on Prince Hal, the son of the king in the Shakespearean history Henry IV, Part 1. (Van Sant said Kier originally used a blue flashlight; they changed it to a lamp to avoid comparison to Blue Velvet.) As such, it takes much from Orson Welles's Falstaff. Scott will love Mike, but their relationship will be threatened when Scott comes into his inheritance. The film follows two street hustlers, Mike (River Phoenix) and Scott (Keanu Reeves), as they embark on a journey of personal discovery that takes them to Mike's hometown in Idaho and then to Italy in search of Mike's mom. Directed by Gus van Sant, My Own Private Idaho (1991) is a modern retelling of Shakespeare's Henry IV. Posted by thedrunkenodyssey in Film, Shakespeare, The Rogue's Guide to Shakespeare on Film, 47. Before Good Will Hunting and Finding Forrester; before the ill-advised Psycho remake and the experimental Gerry; before the movies about Harvey Milk and Kurt Cobain, Portland-based indie auteur Gus Van Sant made My Own Private Idaho, an avant-garde drama starring River Phoenix as a narcoleptic gay hustler and Keanu Reeves as his friend and co-worker. Director Gus Van Sant’s indie drama My Own Private Idaho (1991) is a creative modern retelling of William Shakespeare’s Henry IV and Henry V through the lens of two male prostitutes Seattle, Portland, Idaho, and Rome. And yet Gus Van Sant’s cameras will be gentle to him, in this unforgettable film. Mike, however, is gay, narcoleptic and has no o… Yes No. There’s no reason to know the time. (According to E. L. Doctorow, Falstaff is a flat character.) Jonathan Rosenbaum , The Chicago Reader Ques Question Results Question 1: My Own Private Idaho recounts the story of Shakespeare’s in Henry IV. Based on William Shakespeare's play, "Henry IV, Part I." Another source (to which Van Sant had already given the title "My Own Private Idaho") was another screenplay about street hustlers, one older and one younger, who travel to Spain looking for one's mother. First of all, while Portland does have a monument by that name, the real one doesn't look like that. Go figure. The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, But in ourselves, that we are underlings. Additional Sources: Interview Magazine Those brief snippets where anonymous Portland street kids talk about their experiences aren't just meant to look like a documentary—they are a documentary.