Narrated by Robert Downey, Jr. and featuring Lou Reed, Ellen Burstyn, Jared Leto, Darren Aronofsky, Uli Edel, Henry Rollins, Jerry Stahl, Richard Price and Nick Tosches. This documentary is a harrowing and engaging exploration into the life and art of the renowned author Hubert Selby Jr, who, against all odds, overcame tuberculosis, drug addiction and financial ruin to reach international acclaim with his controversial novels. His canon of work represents seven of the most remarkable and distinctly American books ever written. His novels LAST EXIT TO BROOKLYN and REQUIEM FOR A DREAM went on to gain the literary respect they deserved and both became major motion pictures.
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Another excellent documentary that should be watched by anyone thinking about doing heroin. Or writing. Lou Reed sums it up that everyone who writes has been somehow influenced by Hubert Selby, Jr. He wrote for folks at the lowest point of spiritual deprivation, the equivalent in fiction of spiritual guide books for the sick and afflicted, asserted another of the people interviewed. Absolutely worth watching. Last Exit To Hubert Selby, Jr.
I was fortunate enough to pick up Selby's book "Last Exit to Brooklyn" on a whim in the early 1990s. It is a unique, disturbing, deeply moving book and I reread it many times. At that time I learned a little bit about Hubert Selby Jr. and like many was surprised to learn that he was still alive despite his addictions and multiple serious medical problems.
This documentary filled in a lot of the blanks for me - not only was Selby Jr still alive 20 years ago but he continued to be a working artist and mentor just about up till the day he died in 2004. Watch the movie to find out more. A life well lived and worth documenting on film.