Inspired by the true story of Kurt Cobain, the lead singer of the popular Seattle-based rock band Nirvana who committed suicide in 1994, director Gus Van Sant (ELEPHANT) presents this meditative journey through the last days in the life of fictional musician Blake (Michael Pitt). In a bewildered state of drug withdrawal, Blake stumbles through deep woods groaning and mumbling quietly. His words are only occasionally audible, and even less occasionally coherent. Thus, the focus is on Blake's tortured, slow-motion movements and his tangle of chin-length blond hair, which hangs like a mask over his face. Reaching a clearing, Blake enters a dilapidated mansion where he lives with four similarly confused young rockers. A string of foggy events follows in partially chronological order. Scenes overlap, allowing for minor details to be added later. This style hints at the insignificance of time--and of everything--from Blake's perspective.
Avoiding human contact, taking long walks, playing music, and hiding in the greenhouse, Blake nears his inevitable end. He digs up a parcel from the backyard, smokes a cigarette and painstakingly pours a bowl of Cocoa Krispies, changes into a black evening gown and grabs a rifle, answers the phone and says nothing when a voice asks him about an upcoming tour. Blake then descends into a bizarre, barely conscious state during which people come and go from the house. But none of it seems to register, as he is already lost. LAST DAYS finds melancholic beauty in green trees reflecting in window panes, and the sound of rippling lake water echoing the ambient noise in Blake's head; and Pitt shows chameleon expertise in his mutely charismatic depiction of the unreachable Blake, whose resemblance to Cobain is both haunting and magical.