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Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998)

R  |   |  Comedy  |  22 May 1998 (USA)
7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 198,379 users   Metascore: 41/100
Reviews: 644 user | 154 critic | 19 from Metacritic.com

An oddball journalist and his psychopathic lawyer travel to Las Vegas for a series of psychedelic escapades.

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(book), (screenplay), 3 more credits »
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Cast

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Storyline

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 Laurence Mixson

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

If there was a trip to be taken, they were there (Australian) See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive extreme drug use and related bizarre behavior, strong language, and brief nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

22 May 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Angst und Schrecken in Las Vegas  »

Box Office

Budget:

$18,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$4,335,095 (USA) (22 May 1998)

Gross:

£206,498 (UK) (13 November 1998)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to Terry Gilliam's commentary on the Criterion Collection DVD, at the beginning of the movie when they stop on the side of the road after Duke starts seeing bats and wants Gonzo to drive, you can see a strange looking cactus in the background. It was designed by Ralph Steadman and appears many times in the background of the movie in various scenes. Gilliam complained of having to lug it around wherever they went. See more »

Goofs

Dr. Gonzo spoofs the "Richard Nixon salute" when he gets on the plane at the end of the movie. Nixon didn't resign or do the classic "salute" until 1974. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Raoul Duke: [narrating] We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the drugs began to take hold. I remember saying something like:
Raoul Duke: I feel a bit lightheaded. Maybe you should drive.
Raoul Duke: [narrating] 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:
Raoul Duke: Holy Jesus. What are these goddamn animals?
[swatting the air]
Raoul Duke: Huh! Huh! Huh! Fucking pigs.
Dr. Gonzo: Did you ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The credits literally scroll up the freeway. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ebert Presents: At the Movies: Episode #2.15 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Tammy
Composed by Ray Evans (as Raymond Evans)
Lyrics by Jay Livingston
Performed by Debbie Reynolds
Published by St. Angelo Music
Administered by MCA Music Publishing A Division of Universal Studios, Inc., Jay Livingston Music,
Inc., and St. Angelo Music
Courtesy of MCA Records
Under license from Universal Music Special Markets
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
One of the best films ever.
1 November 2002 | by (South Wales, UK) – See all my reviews

It's hard to describe how good this movie is without sounding sycophantic but it really is that good. This film is based on the "true" story of when the notorious reporter Hunter S. Thompson and his then attorney Oscar Zeta Acosta went to Las Vegas to cover a bike race for rolling stone magazine but instead spent the entire trip going out of their minds on various illegal and legal chemicals. This may sound like a one trick pony for stoners and 60's throwbacks but I am neither and I thoroughly enjoyed this film. Very few films based on books manage to tell the story or capture the spirit of the original but F&L certainly manages both. The story sticks closely enough to the book without alienating the books fan base but also trims out the right areas so that the film doesn't become overly long and uninteresting.

The film is still fairly long, compared with most popcorn fare, at around 2hrs and does sag a little in places but the pace quickly picks up again. The performances are absolutely spot on with Johnny Depp and Benicio Del Toro virtually becoming their characters. Both are heavily disguised under make-up but their acting ability shines through. On first viewing I wasn't that impressed, it was a good film but not a great film, but after a second viewing I fell in love with it. You notice things and pick up on gags the second time around that you missed the first time. You immerse yourself in their world so much that you feel like you were there with them on the "trip" in both senses of the word. I have shown this film to most of my friends and they also have become hooked after viewing the film twice, it's such a shame that this great film works like this as I'm sure there are many people who are unwilling to give it the second chance it deserves. If you haven't seen this film I suggest you do and if you don't like it see it again. If you have seen this film and didn't like it, see it again.


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To truly appreciate this movie jah850
This movie would have a 9.5/10 if doctorcraine
My favorite cameo in this movie... Just_Alex
Critical of drug usage? nik-115
We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert... TooManyFives
Who could play Hunter? lpthuglife_89
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