THE END OF THE TOUR tells the story of the five-day interview between Rolling Stone reporter (and novelist) David Lipsky (Jesse Eisenberg) and acclaimed novelist David Foster Wallace (Jason Segel), which took place right after the 1996 publication of Wallace’s groundbreaking epic novel, Infinite Jest. As the days go on, a tenuous yet intense relationship seems to develop between journalist and subject. The two men bob and weave around each other, sharing laughs and also possibly revealing hidden frailties – but it’s never clear how truthful they are being with each other. Ironically, the interview was never published, and five days of audio tapes were packed away in Lipsky’s closet. The two men did not meet again. The film is based on Lipsky’s critically acclaimed memoir about this unforgettable encounter, Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself, written following Wallace’s 2008 suicide. Both Segel and Eisenberg reveal great depths of emotion in their performances and the film is directed with humor and tenderness by Sundance vet James Ponsoldt from Pulitzer- Prize winner Donald Margulies’ insightful and heartbreaking screenplay. The acclaimed author and essayist David Lipsky joins us for a lively and freewheeling conversation on his impressions of Wallace as a writer and an engaging artist.
“It’s ultimately a movie – one of the most rigorous and thoughtful I’ve seen – about the ethical and existential traps our fame-crazed culture sets for the talented and the mediocre alike.” – A. O. Scott, New York Times
“The result is less portrait of an artist than snapshot of a brief, meaningful encounter, shared between two men enjoying different stages of professional success.” – A. A. Dowd, AV Club
“Road trips are a fairly routine framework for movies, often with a focus on two traveling companions. Never have I seen one that moved me so close to tears as “The End of the Tour,” which transforms that common clay into a work of beauty.” – Minneapolis Star News
“Made with love and skill, the movie deserves to be seen.” Ty Burr, Boston
“In Segel’s performance, [the film] captures the quandary of an immensely gifted and immensely troubled writer who disdained the celebrity he also, without fully fessing up to it, sought.” – Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor