There are just under a million ways that a film of Jack Kerouac’s On the Road could go wrong. And not just wrong but bad in an eye-rollingly painful manner. That being said, there are few people one would trust more on such a windy and spacious piece of work than Walter Salles, who showed with The Motorcycle Diaries how to turn the personal and rambling into something epic and transformative.
So: on the plus side: Salles directing, Coppola producing, and Viggo Mortensen as Old Bull Lee (William S. Burroughs, who the ever-tricky and extra-literate Viggo seems born to play). On the con side: the appearance of the ever one-note Kristen Stewart, and a previously quite morose Sam Riley playing the ebullient force-of-life Sal Paradise.
In any case, the film opens late in December and we’ll see then. Good luck, folks.
You can see the trailer here: