"Howl" is a unique and jazzy take on the biopic, appropriate since its inspiration is seminal beat poet Allen Ginsberg.

"Howl" is a unique and jazzy take on the biopic, appropriate since its inspiration is seminal beat poet Allen Ginsberg.

It hops deftly from recreations of Ginsberg interviews, the 1957 obscenity trial surrounding his work "Howl," and lush and trippy animations accompanying readings of Ginsberg poems.

James Franco - already getting Oscar buzz for "127 Hours" - does a fine impression in the lead here, nailing Ginsberg's staccato speech patterns, even if there isn't much depth of the character for him to dive into.

There's also not much narrative structure to grab onto here, but clocking in well under 90 minutes, it makes for a brisk and heady ride.