‘Last Flag Flying’: Richard Linklater Talks Sequels, More ‘Dazed’ & Disappointment With ‘Everybody Wants Some!!’ [Interview]


So, I spoke to Richard Linklater about his latest film "Last Flag Flying." The full transcript can be found below, but I found him to be an endearing and very thoughtful person, which is rare in this industry. His film is opening the NYFF and has been received with mixed reviews. I liked it and, I believe, the mainstream will as well.

The Last Detail,” Hal Ashby’s 1973 masterpiece about the road trip and toxic friendship which developed between three Navy sailors has aged like fine wine over the years, turning into an elegy for the country’s loss of innocence post-Vietnam. Jack Nicholson and Randy Quaid‘s incredible performances drove the narrative home with unexpectedly touching vitality, and the picture has cemented a place as one of the greats of 1970s American cinema.
Last Flag Flying,” which premiered at the New York Film Festival, is set some 30 years after “The Last Detail” in 2003, when the war in Iraq was on everybody’s mind. Based on Darryl Ponicsan’s novel, who also collaborated with Linklater on the screenplay, it has Richard “Doc” Shepherd (Steve Carell) reuniting with Former Marines Sal (Bryan Cranston) and Richard Mueller (Laurence Fishburne), but the mission this time is very different — they have to bury Doc’s son, a young Marine killed in the Iraq War. Arlington Cemetery is the destination and, with the assistance of his old buddies, they travel through the eastern part of the country to bring the casket “home.

Director Richard Linklater’s “sequel” isn’t really a direct follow-up, so much as its meant to drive Ashby’s timeless themes, and its core soul, forward to a new era. Despite being set three decades later, the country’s imperilled moral battles haven’t changed a bit and, if anything, have considerably worsened.
[Interview posted on The Playlist]

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