The Rum Diary
Tue 17 January 2012 // 20:00
(Tues 17th, Thurs 19th, Friday 20th Jan / 8pm / £5/4/3 (TTT), Babycinema 11am Weds 18th)
(Bruce Robinson / 2011 / USA / 120 minutes / Certificate 15)
So Johnny Depp knew Hunter S Thompson well, after research for Fear and Loathing...and now he plays the lead role of the forgotten novel Thompson wrote in the early 1960s aged 22, fictionalising his stint on a newspaper in Puerto Rico. The story of journalist Paul Kemp escaping the city to Puerto Rico to write for for the San Juan Star...and his descent into hedonistic fog.
It is Thompson's autobiographical account of the alcoholism, violence and corruption he encountered there. But on screen, Depp's Paul Kemp has been transformed into a more conventional soul with worthy intentions, who rescues a coveted lady from her ruthless businessman boyfriend and is less renegade spirit than hapless hero.
Written and directed by Bruce Robinson (Withnail and I), the film approaches the Gonzo story of origin with affection featuring plenty of mild, boozy
havoc-wreaking, and comedy moments, but no drug-haze or rage...a modern view of wild.