In James Ponsoldt's new film, Jason Segal stars as David Foster Wallace during the last few days of his book tour for his well received 1998 novel Infinite Jest. Jessie Eisenberg stars opposite Segal as David Lipsky, at the time a journalist for Rolling Stone, who convinces his boss that he should travel to snowy Illinois to profile the obscure genius that is David Foster Wallace.
What begins as clear admiration, even jealousy maybe, Lipsky, an aspiring novelist himself, sets out to meet the man and uncover the mind behind the amazing novel and finds a normal, if not hesitant and reserved, mid-western guy who doesn't want any of the fame this book has brought. For the next three days, Lipsky follows Wallace around, traveling to Minneapolis, and back to Illinois.
Segal is wonderful as Wallace and Eisenberg infuriating as Lipsky. While we start with Lipsky's point of view and our desire is his desire, to find out who David Foster Wallace is, we quickly find him grating and disruptive. He wishes for everything that Wallace has - fame, a best-selling novel, women throwing themselves as readings - and Wallace wants none of it. He just wrote a book and wants to teach at the local high school. Lipsky even asks Wallace about his bandana, causing the cautious author to consider that people see his bandana as a sort of mask he wears in public, part of some charade as the mid-western, reclusive author.
David Foster Wallace committed suicide in 2008 and the inspiration for the movie comes from LIpsky's book about his time with Wallace. James Ponsoldt, previously at Sundance with "Smashed" and "Spectacular Now," captures two wonderful performances by both Segal and Eisenberg. He moves quickly through the awkward introductions and into the heart of the matter: two writers musing about success.
There is no trailer yet, but as soon as we find it, we'll post it for you.