Easy Rider - They Blew It (Jeff Batts)
When I first heard the campfire conversation where Wyatt keeps muttering 'We blew it,' I interpreted that to mean that he's looked back on his hippie lifestyle and realized that it's been a waste of time. It seemed that he was reflecting on the trip and blaming himself for George's death. The commune they visited that represented their ideals was barely surviving. After all the negative responses from society towards Billy and himself, he felt that their ideals had lost. However, the Costello reading casts a new light on the phrase, one that I feel is a much better explanation.
Costello's argument behind 'We blew it' states that after the Mardi Gras trip, Wyatt and Billy 'sold out'. They did what everyone else would do on a Mardi Gras trip. The goal of the trip wasn't peaceful, political, or many of the aspects that Miller outlines of the 'hippie lifestyle.' The goal was to get high and bang hot chicks, and while I certainly can't knock them for having that goal, it's not what the counterculture movement was about.
Because of this, the tone of the movie changes. Had I stuck with my initial reaction about the meaning of 'We blew it,' it means that Easy Rider is a movie that mocks the counterculture movement. It would mean Wyatt and Billy got what they deserved. With Costello's interpretation of the meaning (which I think makes much more sense than mine), the movie serves as a warning the counterculture movement. It basically tells them 'We can't let our guard down. If we want the movement to remain strong, don't ever compromise your morals, because one small compromise could kill the entire movement.' - A message that fits the movie well, because one small compromise by Wyatt and Billy proved fatal.