Less Than Zero
Release date: November 6, 1987
Record label: Def Jam
There's only been one great adaptation of a Bret Easton Ellis novel, and Less Than Zero ain't it. Marek Kanievska lurid version of Ellis' first novel, released when he was just 21, is all flash. Following a group of similarly aged characters as they drift around Los Angeles, blowing money and coke, getting into increasingly ugly business, Ellis wrote a novel that will leave you chilled. Kanievska's film can't capture the writer's tricky tone; his movie just feels trashy, a vehicle for young stars like Robert Downey Jr. and Andrew McCarthy to play at being bad.
The props, then, go to Rick Rubin for his impeccably curated soundtrack. Released on Def Jam, the album contains classic singles like LL Cool J's "Going Back to Cali," Public Enemy's "Bring the Noise," and an incredible Paul Simon cover from the Bangles, "A Hazy Shade of Winter." —RS