Above is a very interesting article about re-reading Bret Easton Ellis's Less Than Zero as an adult. The author Rob Horning talks in the article about how he first read Less than Zero when he was a fifteen year old teenager. Horning talks about how the Blank Fiction format of the book blew his mind away. He goes on to say how this narrative played out all his bad ideas about this generation of youth. He says;
Write about apathetic teens doing lots of drugs and having sex indiscriminately; dump in a lot of inscrutably allusive pop-culture references; strip the prose of all lyricism and substitute a brutalist stream of consciousness, with the trick that the consciousness you’re streaming is so devoid of reflexive insight that it comes across as aleatory and affectless. This would best capture the existential reality of youth boredom, which of course, as all teenagers knew, was the most significant problem confronting society in the Reagan years.
The themes that are dealt with in Less than zero, represents the 80s culture in a way that had been really explored before Easton Ellis but Ellis being the most famous for it. For example the Blank Generation is very much a statement of pushing boundaries on which is acceptable in society at this certain time and still relevant in today’s society. Another important theme in the books is Drugs and how it consumes the life of character Julian. In the 1985 novel drugs are very apparent and many if not if almost all the characters are taking them and are living the influential social party life that is seen today in TV shows such as Laguna Beach, Gossip Girl and 90210. However in the 1987 movie adaption the Drug ideology was very much gone and the film became very much a anti- drug movie with the protagonist Clay's characteristics barely reconcilable from the book.
Less than Zero very much was a statement of Bret Easton Ellis life at this period of time, he says to Daily news & analysis that,
I don't feel like I am the 80’s spokesperson," Ellis, now 46, said in an interview.
Critics may have felt his most famous book and others, such as American Psycho were about the 1980s, but Ellis insists otherwise. "They were actually about myself."