Easy Rider was released in 1969, it's a late '60s "road film" tale of a search for freedom (or the illusion of freedom) in a conformist America. This movie was directed by Dennis Hopper, produced by Peter Fonda, and written by: Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper and Terry Southern. The stars include Jack Nicholson as George Hanson, Peter Fonda as Captain America (Wyatt), and Dennis Hopper as Billy. This movie is about freedom, but it's also about the conflicts and struggles when seeking true freedom and enlightenment. As a young Jack Nicholson said in the movie "yeah, freedom. That's what it's all about, but it's difficult to be free when you're bought and sold in the marketplace."
Easy Rider is the motorcycle journey of Captain america and Billy from LA to New Orleans for mardi Gras. Along the way, the characters met a hippie who was heading home to his commune. Captain America and Billy spent time in prison and befriended George (Jack Nicholson) a drunk lawyer. George also joined the journey after all three of them were released from prison. Since Easy Rider was made in the '60s, one can get to peek into a time capsule of the fashion, language, and filming techniques of the time when watching it. What scared me was that when I saw the movie 30 years after its release, I can still see the hate and distrust between individuals that was discussed in the film happening in the world we're living in.
One thing I like about this film is that even the language and sounds are dated the '60s, both Fonda and Hopper characters are timeless. Fonda played the role of a philosopher and conscience of the group-slow to speak and always insightful. While Hopper (loud, arrogant and aggressive.) portrayed the ugly American. He was a stoned loner who wanted things his way and his way only. When the duo encountered Nicholson, who was recovering in jail after another heavy night of drinking, the polar opposites in their manners and behaviors were become more obvious to viewers. Although Captain America and Billy were both representations of hippies. Captain America was the hippie ideal, coolly looking toward enlightenment and its freedom; Billy was the hippie worst case scenario, searching only for a good time of drugs, booze and women.
In a scene when the three were in a small dinner in Northern Louisiana, they were ignored by the servers and verbally harassed by the local sheriff and a bunch of backwoods locals. Afterward, Nicholson puts the incident in his perspective and said, "They're not scared of you, they're scared of what you represent-freedom." (By the way, this movie launched Nicholson's superstar career.) The movie climaxed with Captain America and Billy's arrival in New Orleans. They experience Mard Gras in the streets, ate their last meal, and had a hallucinogenic experience with two prosititutes in a cemetery, which was a final prediction of their violent and untimely demise. From this moive, I have learned how bigotory and violence can be. Also, the importance of acceptance and freedom. Freedom and life are equally important and can't be separate. If a person's freedom is taken by someone or something, he or she is not worth more than a dead soul.
Born to be wild...................................