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Film / The Last Movie

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The Last Movie is a 1971 drama film directed by and starring Dennis Hopper, who also co-wrote the story with screenwriter Stewart Stern (Rebel Without a Cause, which Hopper had appeared in).

Kansas (Hopper) is a stunt coordinator in charge of horses on a Western film being shot in a small Peruvian village. Following a tragic incident on the set where an actor is killed in a stunt, he decides to quit the movie business and stay in Peru. His dreams of a paradisiacal existence are interrupted when he is called in to help in a bizarre incident: the Peruvian natives are "filming" their own movie with "cameras" made of sticks, and acting out real Western movie violence, as they don't understand movie fakery.

Hopper's follow-up to Easy Rider, it had an extremely Troubled Production, limited release, and poor critical reception, effectively becoming a Creator Killer for Hopper as a filmmaker, but has more recently been appreciated as a unique New Hollywood artifact and a Cult Classic, particularly after a 4K restoration premiered in 2018.

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Not to be confused with The Last Picture Show, which came out the same year and was produced by the company that had produced Easy Rider.


This film features examples of:

  • Cargo Cult: The Peruvian natives are "filming" their own movie with "cameras" made of sticks, and acting out real Western movie violence, as they don't understand movie fakery.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: Maria, the local prostitute Kansas takes up with after he decides to give up filmmaking and stay in Peru.
  • The Last Title: The Last Movie.
  • Scenery Porn: Especially in the restored version, some truly breathtaking shots of the Andes.

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