Smoke, Blue in the Face, and Lulu on the Bridge
by Paul Auster
From The New York Trilogy to The Book of Illusions, Paul Auster's novels have earned him a reputation as "one of American's most spectacularly inventive writers." Here, published together for the first time, are the screenplays of the three films he made in the 1990s.
Smoke (starring Harvey Keitel, William Hurt, Forest Whitaker, and Stockard Channing) tells the story of a novelist, a cigar store manager, and a black teenager who unexpectedly cross paths and end up changing each other's lives in indelible ways.
Set in contemporary Brooklyn, Smoke directly inspired Blue in the Face, a largely improvised comedy shot in a total of six days. A film unlike any other it stars Harvey Keitel, with featured performances by Roseanne, Lily Tomlin, Lou Reed, and Michael J. Fox.
Lulu on the Bridge (Auster's solo directorial debut, again starring Harvey Keitel, with Mira Sorvino, Willem Dafoe, and Vanessa Redgrave) opens with the accidental shooting of jazz musician Izzy Maurer during a performance in a New York club. Izzy is then led on a journey into the strange and sometimes frightening labyrinth of his soul. Both thriller and fairy tale, Lulu on the Bridge is above all a story about the redemptive powers of love.
- Picador, December 2003
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