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Film / Highway 61

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Love, drugs, guns, and the devil.
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Highway 61 (1991) is a Road Movie directed by Bruce McDonald and starring Don McKellar.

McKellar plays Pokey Jones, a barber and aspiring jazz musician who discovers the body of a vagrant in his back yard. A mysterious woman, played by Valerie Buhagiar, shows up to claim the body as her brother, and take him back to New Orleans. While her real purpose is to smuggle drugs, Pokey agrees to drive her all the way.

Meanwhile, Mr. Skin, a delusional man who thinks he's Satan, played charmingly by Earl Pastko, is following them collecting souls, and one of his victims is a widower with hopes to bring his daughters to country music stardom.


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Some tropes associated with the film include:

  • Canada, Eh? : The first part of the film is set in Northern Ontario.
  • Coffin Contraband: Bangs uses the dead body to hide drugs. They travel with the coffin strapped to the roof of the car.
  • Cool Car : Pokey's parents' car, which hasn't been driven in decades.
  • Deal with the Devil : The dead man Pokey found owes Mr. Skin his soul.
  • Did the Earth Move for You, Too? : Played with. In the midst of her Immodest Orgasm, Jackie fires a gun.
    Jackie: Now I know why they call you Pokey.
    Pokey: Now I know why they call you Bangs.
  • Canadian Music: The soundtrack features some great Canadian indie bands, including The Bourbon Tabernacle Choir and Nash the Slash.
  • Stage Mom : Mr. Watson: he wants his daughters to become great country musicians.
  • The Cameo: Jello Biafra as a customs agent
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  • Title Drop : Pokey loves pop culture and he tells Jackie he wants to travel on the subject of Bob Dylan's famous album, as Highway 61 will take you all the way through the U.S.

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