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Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr Hunter S Thompson (15)

PUBLISHED: 16:53 22 December 2008 | UPDATED: 13:26 24 August 2010

by Will Davies Hunter S Thompson was a mythical American figure whose suicide, by gunshot, led Rolling Stone Magazine to devote an entire issue (its best-selling ever) to the man that launched a thousand sips of bourbon, endless snorts of

by Will Davies

Hunter S Thompson was a mythical American figure whose suicide, by gunshot, led Rolling Stone Magazine to devote an entire issue (its best-selling ever) to the man that launched a thousand sips of bourbon, endless snorts of cocaine and a brash, irreverent, fearless style of journalism - named 'gonzo'.

This new film biography is narrated by Johnny Depp, who starred in the film version of Thompson's classic book Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.

The filmmakers had access to hundreds of photographs and over 200 hours of audiotapes, home movies and documentary footage of the man.

While his pen dripped with venom for crooked politicians, Thompson surprised nervous visitors with the courtly manners and soft-spoken delivery of a Southern gentleman.

Careening out of control in his personal life, Thompson maintained a steel-eyed conviction about righting wrongs.

Today, in a time, when spin has replaced the search for deeper meaning, Thompson remains an iconic crusader for truth, justice and a fiercely idealistic American way.

Directed by Alex Gibney, whose Taxi to the Dark Side won him an Oscar, Gonzo is surely the definitive film biography of one of the most influential journalists of the 20th Century.

RATING: 5 stars

w.davies@archant.co.uk

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