One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – 4/25/19

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

Screening Thursday, April 25, 2019 at 7:30 PM One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest was released in 1975 to critical and popular acclaim. It garnered the top five Academy Awards®: Best Film, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Actor and Best Actress. Only two other films have accomplished that: It Happened One Night (1934) and Silence of the Lambs (1991). The story of a "free spirit" clashing with a "control freak" is a classic sixties theme of man against the system. Ken Kesey, author of the 1962 best-selling novel, became the godfather of the hippie movement after he and his Merry Pranksters were profiled in Tom Wolfe’s The Electric Kool Aid Acid Test. That non-fiction book chronicles a group of hippies as they follow The Grateful Dead around, spiking Kool-Aid with LSD and serving it to concert-goers. Kesey wrote One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest while working at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Menlo Park, California. "Yes, McMurphy is fictional," Kesey said, speaking of the novels protoganist, "inspired by the tragic longing of the real men I worked with on the ward, the sketches of whom, both visual and verbal, came more easily to my hand than anything before or since, and those sketches gradually enclosed for me the outline of the hero they wanted. And yes, I did write the book both on the ward and on drugs, double checking my material so to speak." Director Milos Forman (Ragtime, Amadeus), said that he directed the film in a naturalistic style. "I was fascinated just to see real faces