First, the good news. Painter turned director Julian Schnabel does far better with his first movie than Robert Longo or David Salle did with theirs: JOHNNY MNEMONIC and SEARCH AND DESTROY, respectively. Schnabel at least manages to tell a fairly coherent story.
The bad news: It's not a very interesting story, and Schnabel doesn't have the chops to make it one by sheer strength of filmmaking prowess. Jean-Michel Basquiat (Jeffrey Wright), who died at the age of 27 of a heroin overdose, was a go-go '80s phenomenon, an African-American graffiti artist whose
work enchanted all the right people, probably for all the wrong reasons. Schnabel, who was Basquiat's friend, ta...