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Easy Rider - Eric Nelson

I do see all of Miller’s hippie ideals in Easy Rider. When Wyatt picks up the hippie even though it is out of the way, that is showing love. Another example of love during the film was the sharing of food with the two bikers. Yet another example is when Wyatt and Billy decide to take George with them to Mardi Gras. Nonviolence is another key aspect of the film. It is shown when the group enters the diner, is ridiculed, and is refused service, but still do nothing disruptive, they just leave. The violent ways of American culture are also quite evident throughout the film in situations such as, the men from the diner beating them in their sleep and two in the truck at the end with the shotgun. Anti-materialism is shown through the small hippie community they don’t need money and they live of the land. This little community also expresses the environmental awareness and want to “drop out,? during the counterculture.

Wyatt represents the counterculture where as Billy is more representative of the popular culture. This is shown, by Wyatt’s laid back attitude and respect for those living off the land. In contrast to this Billy is quite hostile and greedy. For example when the hitchhiker hippie tries to fill Billy’s gas tank and he refuses, then proceeds to fill Wyatt’s gas tank, and then Billy complains to Wyatt that they have a lot of money in there and the hippie might see it or steal it, but Wyatt is not worried about it.

When Wyatt says, “We blew it.? He is referring to the ideals the duo represent. They “blew it? in the sense that they went against all they stood for when they made that money, or in other words they sold out and conformed to the ideals they hated.