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The Last Movie Reviews

Reviewed By: Lucia Bozzola

The Last Movie seemed to be an all-too prescient title for Dennis Hopper's second directorial opus. Pumped up from the success of his first auteur credit, Easy Rider, and capitalizing on Hollywood's thirst for similarly counterculture films, Hopper landed a studio deal that allowed him full control over a work he envisioned as a metaphorical, artistically complex statement about the end of the Western and the American dream. Shot on-location in Peru, and edited for months by Hopper in New Mexico, The Last Movie instead appeared to the suits at Universal and the vast majority of the audience to be an incoherent, drug-addled mess of flash-forwards, flashbacks, and a movie-within-a movie. Despite taking the Critics' Prize at the Venice Film Festival and featuring striking images of the Peruvians' movie-making "ritual," The Last Movie opened to scathing reviews and died a quick box-office death. Once on the vanguard of the New Hollywood, Hopper's career did not fully recover from the fiasco until the mid-'80s.