Socialist Worker


Issue No. 2241

Allen Ginsberg’s beat poem Howl caused outrage in 1950s America.

This film tries to show why the poem had such an impact and why a trial for obscenity trial followed its publication.

It combines dramatisation of Ginsberg (James Franco) reading the poem, with dramatic surrealist animation and a recreation of the trial.

The poem rages at society, its treatment of people who are different and its rejection of love.

Howl tries hard, but just fails to bring all its elements together.

Still it is a story about a work of art that should be known, and is worth seeing.

Howl, directed by Robert Epstein and Jeffrey Freidman is out now

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Article information

Tue 1 Mar 2011, 18:46 GMT
Issue No. 2241
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