Litkicks Message Board Archive

Beat Angel

Posted to WritersAndGenres

I think you may have been reading the webpage incorrectly. Beat Angel is a small, independent production based upon a script written by Vincent Balestri, who for about 20 years traveled around performing his one-man play, "Kerouac: The Essence of Jack." Balestri's performances of Kerouac were probably the closest thing you'll ever see to Jack in real life. I believe the quote you cite was from a review of that play--"a Kerouac so real, it's eerie."

I certainly approached the play with a good deal of trepidation and skepticism, but over the next two years, I saw the play four times--including being in attendance for its final performance.

I cannot speak to the quality of the movie Balestri and friends have now created, but I can assure people they are not likely to be offended by Balestri's interpretation of Jack's spirit. He is very much in touch with that.

I reviewed Balestri's Kerouac for the "Kerouac Connection" in 1998. If you're interested, you can read that review online at

However good or bad the movie might ultimately be, it's not one of those money-grabs out of Hollywood, but a labor of love, and you may rest assured that Vince and everyone involved in the project did it out of love for Kerouac.

diane de rooij