The big-screen version of Hunter S. Thompson's seminal psychedelic classic about his road trip across Western America as he and his large Samoan lawyer searched desperately for the "American dream"... they were helped in large part by the huge amount of drugs and alcohol kept in their convertible, The Red Shark. Written by
Duke's tribute to Dr. Gonzo - "There he goes. One of God's own prototypes. Some kind of high-powered mutant never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die" - is taken from the foreword of "Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo," the semi-autobiographical novel written by 'Oscar Zeta Acosta'. Zeta Acosta was the famous "Chicano lawyer" and friend of Hunter S. Thompson whose notorious party binges served as the model for Dr. Gonzo. See more »
When Duke is talking to Dr. Gonzo from the phone-booth in the desert, a Dead Kennedys' DK logo is seen spray-painted on the door of the booth. The DK logo wasn't yet in existence in 1972. See more »
We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the drugs began to take hold. I remember saying something like:
I feel a bit lightheaded. Maybe you should drive.
Suddenly, there was a terrible roar all around us, and the sky was full of what looked like huge bats, all swooping and screeching and diving around the car, and a voice was screaming:
Holy Jesus. What are these goddamn animals?
[swatting the air]
Huh! Huh! Huh! Fucking pigs.
Did you ...
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The Ralph Steadman drawings from the book are put in with the credits, along with the Gonzo & Duke in the Red Shark picture that takes up the whole screen at the end. See more »
This is far from your everyday movie, and only for those with a deep appreciation for the diversity of film-making, or fans of Hunter S. Thompson. This does not mean those mentioned will enjoy it, although definitely respect the attempt. I personally found it fascinating. To portray a permanently drug induced state to the big screen was done with creativity and subtle humour. You could expect nothing less from director Terry Gilliam who has played such a massive role in the brilliant and original Monty Python works.
Having never read any of Hunter S. Thompson's work, I get the impression that justice is done for the adaptation to the big screen. An absolutely quality cast must be credited for this, ensuring a natural performance is achieved. Las Vegas which features strongly throughout the movie seems to be so appropriate when dealing with this subject matter, they just seem to go hand in hand.
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