New poster and trailer for the Gus Van Sant-produced “Beat” writer Ginsberg biography Howl

I wasn’t introduced to Allen Ginsberg and the Beat Generation until I attended art school in New York back in the 90’s. In fact, part of the reason I write is because of a series of literary assignments I received in classes I took merely for college credit. They included emulating some Best poet styles and reading, among others, the seminal work of Allen Ginsberg. Now years later, my passion for writing at the very least, matches my passion for the visual arts. But curiously Howl was one of his pieces I haven’t yet read.

Starring James Franco in what’s being described as a career-defining performance as Allen Ginsberg, Howl is the story of how the young poet’s seminal work broke down societal barriers in the face of an infamous public obscenity trial. In his famously confessional style, Ginsberg – poet, counter-culture icon, and chronicler of the Beat Generation – recounts the road trips, love affairs, and search for personal liberation that led to Howl, the most timeless work of his career. Howl interweaves three stories: the unfolding of the landmark 1957 obscenity trial; an imaginative animated ride through the prophetic masterpiece; and a unique portrait of a man who found new ways to express himself, and in doing so, changed his own life and galvanized a generation.

Howl is written and directed by Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman and stars James Franco, David Strathairn, Jon Hamm, Bob Balaban, Alessandro Nivola, Treat Williams, Mary-Louise Parker and Jeff Daniels. The film is produced by Elizabeth Redleaf and Christine Kunewa Walker and executive produced by Gus Van Sant and Jawal Nga. The animation design is by Eric Drooker, with cinematography by Edward Lachman, production designer by Therese DePrez, costume design by Kurt and Bart and a score by Carter Burwell.

Check out the trailer for Howl below.

Click on the poster for a larger version.

Howl movie poster
Howl movie poster