• Cronenberg_lunch_large

    No other director has a body of work quite like that of David Cronenberg, whom we’re celebrating today on his sixty-ninth birthday. But then, no other work seems so focused on the body—what can happen to it, what can come out of it, what can go into it. That Cronenberg is such a cerebral filmmaker makes his corporeal focus all the more compelling. That combo made William S. Burroughs’s heady and squishy Naked Lunch a perfect project for him. To realize a cinematic version of Burroughs’s nonlinear, seemingly untranslatable novel about drug addiction, Cronenberg created physical manifestations of some of the writer’s abstract ideas—like the enormous bug that the film’s exterminator protagonist Bill Lee (Peter Weller) encounters in this scene.

    Naked Lunch was the culmination of Cronenberg’s lifelong fascination with William S. Burroughs. That is just one of the many topics he touches on in the following conversation about his career with Museum of the Moving Image chief curator David Schwartz from 1992, not long after the release of Naked Lunch.

26 comments

  • By ballewes
    March 15, 2012
    09:09 PM

    Love hearing about Cronenberg's interaction with Burroughs. The anecdotes about Ornette Coleman are fascinating, too... Insightful interview with one of the most humble and inspired filmmakers alive.
    Reply
  • By Justin
    March 15, 2012
    09:19 PM

    This is a terrific little article and sound-bit on Canada's most masterful director (and writer). I almost cried tears of joy when the Videodrome Criterion blu-ray was finally released, and I'm really glad to see people across the globe embrace the wonder of this man's work. To put out this article on his birthday was one of the finest things you guys could've done. What would be one better? More Cronenberg blu-ray releases soon please :).
    Reply
  • By Dontgetnastybro
    March 15, 2012
    10:51 PM

    Dead Ringers on Blu-ray already! Come on!
    Reply
  • By azzyistired
    March 16, 2012
    01:12 AM

    cronenberg is gooollldddd! and yes both naked lunch and dead ringers for blu-ray!!
    Reply
  • By TheHammerer
    March 16, 2012
    01:32 AM

    warners has the rights to dead ringers now, so that probably won't happen... but yes to naked lunch on blu-ray please
    Reply
  • By Joe O.
    March 16, 2012
    02:54 AM

    Please release Naked Lunch and Dead Ringers on Blu-ray!
    Reply
  • By dasboot4211
    March 16, 2012
    10:40 AM

    I liked Cronenberg as a film maker until the first time I watched Naked Lunch, then I became a huge fan. The film is brilliant. By the way the first time I saw this film was when Criterion released this film on DVD. I highly recommend it.
    Reply
    • By Tony L.
      March 18, 2012
      12:05 PM

      I watched it on the big screen during its original theatrical release. I've never seen so many walk-outs during a film before (or since).
  • By Shaun Pearson
    March 16, 2012
    01:04 PM

    Please release this in BETA!!!! It is such a portable format and the picture quality is faaaaaar superior to VHS! Thank you. Oh, and please Criterion could you release my aunt Bertha's home movies because I love her and she made me oatmeal cookies when I was a little boy.
    Reply
  • By Sidney
    March 16, 2012
    05:19 PM

    Cronenberg always made the best horror films, and this is one of them.
    Reply
  • By Eufi....
    March 16, 2012
    11:04 PM

    I want crash!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Reply
  • By Eufracil P.
    March 16, 2012
    11:14 PM

    I want crash pleaseeeeee!!!!!!!!.....
    Reply
    • By harpua
      June 11, 2013
      06:08 PM

      I am in agreement. Crash needs to be released on Blu Ray. The problem is they MUST release the THEATRICAL UNCUT ORIGINAL version, not the BS NC-17 version which has some crucial shots cut out of it. (only someone who saw the movie in the theater would know what I am talking about) I highly doubt it will ever see the light of day. What a shame.
  • By Corby D.
    March 18, 2012
    01:15 PM

    Cronenberg is my favorite director, so I think all of his films deserve a Criterion release in DVD and BlueRay. I'm most upset by the absence of a Crash re-release, since Criterion did a laserdisc edition once upon a time. The knowledge that he did a commentary track that I've never gotten to hear upsets me to no end.
    Reply
  • By Phil
    March 19, 2012
    09:09 AM

    Thanks for this great post! To echo what others have said, I would love to see more Criterion editions of Cronenberg films, especially: eXistenZ Crash Scanners The Brood Rabid Shivers
    Reply
  • By ictus75
    March 20, 2012
    12:40 AM

    Yes! 'Naked Lunch' in BluRay please! And 'Crash' also. Cronenberg's best moments. And if Criterion ever got the rights to 'Dead Ringers' again…
    Reply
  • By Matt
    July 10, 2012
    04:14 PM

    Blu ray for this would be amazing
    Reply
  • By Jarod Rebuck
    August 29, 2012
    11:01 PM

    Listen to us, Criterion! Naked Lunch & Crash on BluRay, pleeeeaaaase!!! That is the law!!!
    Reply
    • By Craig J. Clark
      August 30, 2012
      08:58 AM

      I thought the law was not to go on all fours.
  • By phil
    January 25, 2013
    09:51 AM

    so glad this is finally coming to blu-ray ....all these commenters prayers have been answered! next, shivers!
    Reply
  • By JonnyCat
    March 12, 2013
    05:09 PM

    Please DO NOT put this on BLU RAY! Cheers
    Reply
  • By alt_man
    October 10, 2013
    01:21 PM

    I'd do almost anything to see CRASH on Blu-Ray. Pleeeeeease.... :)
    Reply
  • By The Baroness
    October 25, 2013
    09:26 AM

    CRASH is SERIOUSLY overdue for a Blu-Ray release. Ditto for THE DEAD ZONE.
    Reply