Indie filmmaker Gregg Araki’s wild, violent, and erotic “The Doom Generation” has been mostly available on middling DVD releases and occasional repertory prints since its radical release in 1995. Araki’s fifth feature film and the second in his Teen Apocalypse Trilogy — bookended by “Totally Fucked Up” and “Nowhere” — “The Doom Generation” will soon re-open in 4K thanks to a new restoration. Watch the new trailer, an IndieWire exclusive, below.
In Araki’s chaotic road trip nightmare, headed home after a wild night at a Los Angeles club, young lovers Jordan White (James Duval) and Amy Blue (Rose McGowan) pick up a dangerously handsome drifter named Xavier Red (Johnathon Schaech). Jordan doesn’t see a problem with offering Xavier a quick ride, but his acid-tongued girlfriend thinks he’s a creep. When Xavier inadvertently kills a convenience store clerk, they are forced to go on the run, traversing a bizarre and ultra-violent America. Somehow, every random thug, drive-thru operator, and neo-Nazi they encounter seems to recognize Amy as a past fling or alter ego, adding to the already explosive sexual tension brimming among the renegade trio.
Restored in 4K with scenes edited for its theatrical release in 1995, this version reflects the director’s cut, intended by Araki. The film has been completely retimed and re-edited for today’s technological standards. The sound is remastered to complement new audio standards in a new 5.1 mix.
“The Doom Generation” is set to play on April 7 in New York at the IFC Theatre, where Araki will present the movie, as well as the Music Box in Chicago and the Alamo Drafthouse in Los Angeles, plus other dates and theaters around the country, in the following weeks.
However, the New York Premiere of the restoration will screen on April 6 at BAM as part of NewFest’s upcoming series “Queering the Canon: Totally Radical,” followed by a Q&A with Gregg Araki.
“When ‘Living End’ came out, it was so polarizing in the gay community,” Gregg Araki explained to “Fire Island” director Andrew Ahn in a recent conversation for IndieWire. “Jim Stark, the producer, he’d say to me, ‘You make these gay movies that gay people hate. They’re too punk rock for gay people and they hate them.’ So he’s like, ‘If you make a straight movie, I’ll produce it and get you real money for it.’ And I said, ‘OK, sure,’ because fuck it. Why not? So that’s why ‘Doom Generation’ has a subtitle, ‘A Heterosexual Movie.’ So I made this heterosexual movie, but in a very punk rock bratty way, made it so gay.”