Less Than Zero (Trailer)

Reading the book, because Bret Easton Ellis’s Paris Review interview made me curious — he said it was carefully composed to sustain a mounting sense of dread. The point is to build a convincing case that being an impossibly rich and beautiful Hollywood scion is a hellishly unappetizing existence. Not great for keeping to the style of what I’m trying to write, excellent for the weather (heatwave).

From this trailer, the movie seems like a version of the book where 1) there is a plot, 2) the main characters can sometimes recognize when they’re having a Feeling about another person, and 3) not everyone is on drugs** 99% of the time. And Robert Downey Jr. plays Julian, of course.

** Sadly, this was what I found quaint about The Catcher in the Rye, which Less Than Zero reminds me of (being another story about a privileged kid at odds with his environment, without any idea of how to change his paradigm): to my 21st-century sensibility — and it was the 21st century before I read it, though I’d done all the other Salingers at the right age — a kid like Holden would’ve started doing drugs, if indeed his parents hadn’t put him on prescription speed right off the bat.