Thursday, March 12, 2015

Life Imitates Art in Less Than Zero

Generation X folks may recall the film Less Than Zero, from 1987. Released in the midst of the light hearted fare of this period like the John Hughes films, this story was dark and moody. It is based on a book written by Bret Easton Ellis. He also wrote the novel that became the film American Psycho, the twisted tale of 1980's Wall Street yuppie Patrick Bateman. That film was a big break for Christian Bale. Less Than Zero starred Andrew McCarthy, Jami Gertz, Robert Downey Jr. and James Spader. Downey Jr. played a guy who was battling drug addiction, which mirrored his own life. The movie was a profile of spoiled rich kids from L.A. who learned the hard way about the pitfalls of substance abuse. The soundtrack featured some of the hottest groups of the day such as The Bangles, Poison, Aerosmith, David Lee Roth and more. It's interesting that the music supervisor was Rick Rubin. He was the co-founder of Def Jam records along with Russell Simmons. It's no coincidence that many of the Def Jam artists are featured on the Less Than Zero soundtrack. These included Slayer, Public Enemy, LL Cool J and Run-DMC.

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