The End of the Tour is a quite touching movie based on journalist David Lipsky‘s memoir of spending five days in 1996 with writer David Foster Wallace during his Infinite Jest publicity tour, 12 years before Wallace‘s suicide.
In 2008 Wallace hanged himself when he was just 46, and Lipsky used the material in a story that won a National Magazine Award.
In 2010 these five days became Although of Cause You End Up Becoming Yourself, a book by Rolling Stone writer David Lipsky.
The End of the Tour is a wonderful journey probably distorted because we knew we are more gently when we remember someone who is not longer with us. A journey made by Lipsky’s recorded cassettes where the two talk about art, television, fame, relationship, writing, life,…
What shows itself between lines is especially Wallace‘s fear. Fear of everything. For example he always wears a bandana. He started use it because he used to live in Tuscon and would sweat. But he still wear it because if he takes it off he fears people will think he-s doing it because he knows some consider it an affection.
Jason Segel as Wallace and Jesse Eisenberg as Lipsky make a fantastic duo on screen in an outstanding performance for both of them and time flies by.
The End of the Tour is not a biopic: what we see on screen is as Lipsky and Wallace travelled by bus, car and plane eating junk food and trying to suss each other out.
In a nearly entirely street-movie they become slowly bro till the moment Lipsky crosses a line and Wallace withdraws.
But 12 years later, when Lipsky receives the sad news and goes in the wardrobe looking for these five-day-recording , there is no space for the bad moments; just for nostalgic memories…for that shoe that came in a box probably few months after that week with just a post-it: FOUND THIS. THOUGHT IS YOURS; because that is exactly the Wallace we meet on screen. Maybe, probably, not the real one; but the Wallace who lives in Lipsky’s memories.
“Books are a social substitute; you read people who, at one level, you’d like to hang out with”
( David Foster Wallace)