I Shot Andy Warhol

  • 106'
  • USA
  • 1996

An exploration of the political and psychological contradictions of Valerie Solanas, the woman who in 1968 shot Andy Warhol. Solanas defined herself as a lesbian, though her orientation was motivated less by sexual desire than by living as a woman in a male-dominated society. The traditional biopic is interrupted with black-and-white sequences of Solanas looking straight into the camera and reciting passages from the Society for Cutting Up Men (SCUM) manifesto, which became a feminist classic.

Though Harron credits Taxi Driver, her movie is as much a variant of Scorsese's King of Comedy. Solanas is an ambitious but disregarded nobody. She exploits men's base animal desires and takes their money but still depends upon their power. The re-creations of the atmosphere of the Factory with its Warhol crowd are vivid. The direct motivation as to why Solanas shot Warhol remains unexplained. Harron: "It wasn't until the editing that I acknowledged I just don't know, and that I should leave it a mystery."

Director
Mary Harron
Country of production
USA
Production Year
1996
Festival Edition
IFFR 2020
Length
106'
Medium
35mm
Language
English
Producers
Tom Kalin, Christine Vachon
Production Company
Killer Films
Screenplay
Dan Minahan, Mary Harron
Cinematography
Ellen Kuras
Editor
Keith Reamer
Production Design
Thérèse DePrez
Cast
Lili Taylor, Jared Harris, Martha Plimpton, Lothaire Bluteau, Anna Levine, Peter Friedman, Tahnee Welch