The End of the Tour (2015)

R   |    |  Biography, Drama


The End of the Tour (2015) Poster

The story of the five-day interview between Rolling Stone reporter David Lipsky and acclaimed novelist David Foster Wallace, which took place right after the 1996 publication of Wallace's groundbreaking epic novel, 'Infinite Jest.'


7.3/10
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  • David Harbour at an event for The End of the Tour (2015)
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  • James Ponsoldt at an event for The End of the Tour (2015)

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20 October 2015 | MartinHafer
7
| Definitely for a very select audience but the acting sure was nice...
"The End of the Tour" is a hard-sell of a movie. While it features Jesse Eisenberg (whose career have been very hot) and Jason Segal and you'd think the film would have mass appeal, it clearly does not. This isn't a complaint--many of the films I really enjoy are really not the sorts of films that would entertain the most viewers. Instead, it's a film for a narrow audience and if you think you might be among those who would appreciate the movie, by all means watch it. After all, you will see some very nice acting and the story improves and gains momentum as the film progresses.

The story is about an odd sort of interview that took place when David Lipsky (Eisenberg) of Rolling Stone Magazine hung out with literary star David Foster Wallace (Segal) for several days back in the late 1990s. Cutting right to the chase, the film begins with the announcement that Wallace committed suicide and the film is a flashback as Lipsky remembers the strange and very lengthy meeting the two had back in 1996. As I said, this lasted days as the two just hung out together and talked...making it far different than a typical magazine interview.

As far as what they talk about and the themes of their meeting go, this really isn't something I can really explain very well in a review-- you just need to see it and experience it. Instead, I would rather try to convey the style of their time together on the film. It feels like you are a fly on the wall as two intellectuals talk and talk and talk....and talk. Wallace generally presents more as an 'Every Man' sort of guy while Lipsky seems, at times, as if he's trying to impress his new friend with his intellectual prowess. What all this means...well, that's really up to the viewer.

The bottom line is that if you really like action films, this film's is probably not for you. If you love 'literature' as opposed to just reading a book for enjoyment, this movie might be exactly what you'd love to see. As for me, I think I'm in the middle on this one. I can really respect the acting as well as the filmmakers' desire to make a quality picture as opposed to a mass-marketed film. But, on the other hand, the film is slow and very deliberate. It also took a while until I really stared to appreciated it...and I'm not if I ever exactly enjoyed it.

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Throughout the movie, people ask David Lipsky about "Jann". For example, Wallace asks him at the start of their interview, "What does Jann want," and says as Lipsky is leaving, "Say hi to Jann for me." This is Jann S. Wenner, the cofounder and editor-in-chief of Rolling Stone Magazine. Although Wenner was always unusually well-known in the general culture for a magazine publisher, he had been especially prominent in the news during the period just prior to the time when Lipsky went to interview Wallace because Wenner had recently left his wife of two decades (also an executive at Wenner Media) for a much younger man. Although they separated in 1995, Jann and Jane Wenner did not actually get divorced until 2011, after same-sex marriage became legal in New York.


Quotes

David Foster Wallace: You didn't think to write where we parked the car?
David Lipsky: No, I didn't. Okay? Sorry, I fucked up. I'm a fuck up. Not everybody could be as brilliant as you.
David Foster Wallace: What is with you?
David Lipsky: What the fuck is with you?


Goofs

The writer's girlfriend was reading the famous 1996 political novel, Primary Colors, but the book was obviously not Primary Colors, as it was much too thick to be Primary Colors -- so it was obviously another, thicker book with a Primary Colors dust jacket slipped on.


Crazy Credits

Halfway through the closing credits, there is an extra scene told from the perspective of David Foster Wallace as Lipsky goes to the bathroom to wash out the chewing tobacco. It shows what Wallace did while he was in the bathroom: he speaks privately into the tape recorder.


Soundtracks

When You Were My Baby
Written by
Stephin Merritt
Performed by The Magnetic Fields
Courtesy of Merge Records
By Arrangement with Bank Robber Music

Storyline

Plot Summary


Synopsis (WARNING: Spoilers)


Genres

Biography | Drama

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