Kalifornia is a 1993 thriller/road film, directed by Dominic Sena and starring Brad Pitt, Juliette Lewis, David Duchovny, and Michelle Forbes. The film focuses on a psychology student and his girlfriend who are traveling cross-country to research serial killers; unbeknownst to them, a man who ends up tagging along with them on their trip (accompanied by his childlike girlfriend) is a serial killer himself.
Brian Kessler (David Duchovny) is a psychology graduate student and a journalist authoring a book about serial killer. He desires to move to California with his photographer girlfriend Carrie Laughlin (Michelle Forbes), and when his book project is accepted by a publisher they decide to do both at once by driving from Pittsburgh to California and visiting infamous murder sites along the way. Short on funds, Brian posts a ride-share ad.
Meanwhile, parole Early Grayce (Brad Pitt) has just lost his job. His parole officer (Judson Vaughn) learns of his firing and arrives at the rented travel-trailer home where Early lives with his young girlfriend Adele Corners (Juliette Lewis). Early refuses the officer's offer of a job, saying that he wants to leave the state. The officer informs him that if he doesn't keep the appointment he will be arrested on parole violation charges and returned to prison, and reminds Early that he's not permitted to leave the state. Early is also confronted by his landlord over non-payment of rent.
Early spies Brian's ad, calls Brian and agrees to meet them early the following morning. Early sends Adele ahead, then (as revealed later in the movie) murders his landlord, buries the body, and torches the trailer before joining Adele to wait for Brian and Carrie. Although Carrie's first response upon sight of the rough-hewn couple is to suggest Brian turn the car around and leave, Brian chides her for being judgmental and asks her to give the plan a chance. She reluctantly agrees.
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