Monday, September 10, 2007 

Obscene is the story of Barney Rosset’s efforts to publish Evergreen and works like Lady Chatterley’s Lover, The Tropic of Cancer, Naked Lunch, and I Am Curious (yellow) in the face of the essentially absurdist repression of the 1950s.

The story is very well told, and extremely interesting. The best moments come from the insights of some of his contemporaries like Jim Carroll and particularly the always charming and insightful Gore Vidal and John Waters (either of whom would be captivating on their own for 90 minutes).

Barney is, in the end and despite his flaws, a hero of contemporary literature and the right of free expression and all the more inspirational that his motivation was at least substantially prurient and all the more touching that he was ultimately successfully attacked by conservative forces. It is a compelling battle cry for the extraordinary social merit of the erotic and perverse.

2007 Toronto International Film Festival

Posted at 11:30:19 GMT-0700

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