Friday, 19 September 2008

gonzo: the life and work of dr hunter s. thompson

"Captivating, mesmerising, fascinating, Gonzo is not just for fans but anyone interested in art, human nature and political history" USA Today

A dazzlingly assembled look at the life and stimulant-enhanced times of American writer and cultural icon Hunter S. Thompson, Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson will screen at ACMI Cinemas in an Australian premiere theatrical season commencing Thursday, October 23.

Kentucky born writer Hunter Stockton Thompson first came to notoriety in the sixties, thanks to his candid and fearless account of his year on the road with the Hell's Angels motorcycle gang, Hell's Angels: The Strange and Terrible Saga of the Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs.

In 1972, Thompson released his most infamous work, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas: A Savage Journey to the Heart of the American Dream. An autobiographical account of a road trip to Las Vegas by a journalist (Thomspon alter-ego Raoul Duke) and his attorney (Dr. Gonzo), the book introduced Thompson's unique style of writing to the world, his manic, brash, first-person bursts of prose later dubbed "gonzo journalism".

Produced by a team including Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter and Melbourne born Academy Award winning producer Eva Orner, the latest work from director Alex Gibney (director of the Oscar-winning documentary Taxi to the Dark Side) was aided by unprecedented support from Thompson's friends, family and estate.

With access to hundreds of photographs and over 200 hours of audio and home movie footage, the team were also given unusual access to Thompson's work itself, including unpublished manuscripts on top of the many letters, books and articles he produced. These words come to life courtesy of narrator Johnny Depp - who once shadowed the writer's every move for his famous portrayal in Terry Gilliam's screen version of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (also screening at ACMI, on Friday 17 October, as part of our Freaky Fridays program)

Expertly edited into a fast and furious ode to its subject, Gonzo owes something of its propulsive style to the journalist's own modus operandi.

"Cheers to Alex Gibney for this mesmerizing documentary about the people, places and substances that altered the mind and battered heart of the inventor of gonzo journalism" Peter Travers, Rolling Stone (USA)

The third film to have an extended-run season at ACMI in the Longplay series, Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson follows the wildly popular Wattstax in December 2007 and the deeply evocative War/Dance in May this year.

Information & bookings: / (03) 8663 2583

Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson > Alex Gibney, 119 mins, USA, 2008, Digital betacam. Courtesy: Madman Cinema

Further information

Matthew Hurst
Communications Coordinator
[direct phone] 61 3 8663 2475 [fax] 61 3 8663 2498 [mobile] 0434 603 655 

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