The “Forgotten” Philip K. Dick Movie: “Radio Free Albemuth”


Came across of folder of these screenshots on my desktop, so I thought I’d share. 2010’s Radio Free Albemuth is one of the lesser known film adaptations of Philip K. Dick’s work, based on a book of the same name that was written in 1976 but published in 1985.

The movie and the book contain what is essentially “proto-VALIS material”…basically, going over a lot of the same stuff that Dick wrote in the “2-3-74” part of his Exegesis. The film had a small budget but it was pretty decent, and put a lot of the VALIS lore, like the pink beam of light, in visual form. Other stuff is like taken directly from the Exegesis, based on actual stuff Dick claimed happened to him (like his files being stolen). So there’s that liminal quality.

There is a character named Phil who looks like Philip K. Dick—which is just really interesting to watch, because it almost feels the closest thing we have to a cinematic portrayal of him (unless there was something else I’m not aware of). The other character, Nick, is sort of like that idealized handsome protagonist but also, in a way, just another stand-in for PKD. And Alanis Morissette makes an appearance as Sylvia, which is very much that sort of otherworldly chanteuse/savior character that Dick used to base on Linda Ronstadt in several books.

I originally caught this on Netflix but I’m not sure if it’s still up there (as I no longer have Netflix). But I think it’s on Amazon Prime as well!