Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Buy the Ticket, Take the Ride

Buy the Ticket, Take the Ride (Tom Thurman, 2006) [5]

The first thing I want to say about this documentary on the life of Hunter S. Thompson is that it should be longer. Sure, this will appeal to any fan of Thompson's writings but I also think die-hards will also be disappointed mostly because it doesn't have that much depth. Thurman has constructed the film around interviews with people like Bill Murray, Johnny Depp, and Sean Penn, who became close with the good doctor, and cuts in with some film clips and interviews. What I really wanted to see more of and don't get nearly enough of are interviews with Thompson himself. One of the key points of the film is the Raoul Duke/Dr. Gonzo character Thompson created of himself for the public was not really the real Thompson. That burden of being a pop culture icon is covered, as Thompson has become a cult figure for generations now. All in all, Thurman does the best with what he's given to work with. It's worth seeing this just to see the unintentionally hilarious Gary Busey interview. The problem with this film is that it's appealing to those that are familiar with Thompson and his work and basically, no one else.

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