Friday, March 2, 2012

The Rum Diary

This year is turning out to be like 2009 in terms of cinema. What I mean is, it's been a long time since so many good movies came out at once!

I just watched The Rum Diary with Johnny Depp. I hadn't heard anything about the movie or the book or the author of the book, Hunter S. Thomson, before tonight. I laughed a lot, which was unexpected, and I learned a lot as it usually happens with interesting movies.

Knowledge gained:

1. Although the book was written in the early 1960s, it was published in 1998, long after Thompson had become famous.

2. Hunter S. Thompson is considered to be the creator of Gonzo journalism: a style of journalism that is written without claims of objectivity, often including the reporter as part of the story via a first-person narrative. Gonzo journalism tends to favor style over fact to achieve accuracy—if accuracy is in fact meant to be achieved at all—and often uses personal experiences and emotions to provide context for the topic or event being covered. It disregards the "polished", edited product favored by newspaper media and strives for a more gritty, personable approach—the personality of a piece is just as important as the event the piece is on. Use of quotations, sarcasm, humor, exaggeration, and profanity is common. (from Wikipedia)

3. I'm always impressed to see how the American Dream is perceived by the Americans; this movie gave me food for thought, especially the part where Lotterman (Richard Jenkins) "explains" what the American Dream is to Kemp (Johnny Depp):  

The American Dream. 
Lotterman and Kemp drinking scotch and discussing the American Dream. 
Lotterman: Look at me Kemp--You’re not sleeping, you’re wide awake. This is the American Dream. 
Kemp: So many hotels you can’t see the sea. 
Lotterman: You can see the sea by checking into the hotels. 
Kemp: Pay to see the sea? 
Lotterman laughs. 
Lotterman: What’s the matter with that? You’re paying to be in the dream. There’s a slim veneer, Kemp, between the dream and the reality. You wake them up and people may start asking for their money back. 
4. Hunter S. Thompson committed suicide in 2005.

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