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Thread: BUY THE TICKET, TAKE THE RIDE: Hunter S. Thompson on Film

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Ottawa Canada

    BUY THE TICKET, TAKE THE RIDE: Hunter S. Thompson on Film

    I bought this DVD recently and it is great.
    This is film clips, talking heads and has narration by Nick Nolte.
    The Gonzo Doctor Hunter S. Thompson is given a beautiful tribute here.
    It's a documentary by Tom Thurman and was made the year after Hunter died.

    The main thing I take away from it is how revered he is and how that reverence is 1000% Justified.
    He was a sane voice in an insane world, and Sean Penn says that will be his Legacy.
    The writing stands and will stand, for as long as there are people who can read. Benicio del Toro says that Hunter will be studied 100 years from now, and Hunter KNEW IT. That's how keen and switched-on he was.
    What a Life he led!

    He lived through some incredible times, but didn't just walk in it. HE WAS IN THE ZEITGEIST. His talent was rare, an ability to see things in a way that no one else did, taking into account the Darkness of the human condition, and how evil manifests itself. He could see treachery in the halls of power and he not only saw it but brought it out into the light. Trouble is, no one knew how to take him. He was an outrageous character, with a self-made mythology that preceded him. Bill Murray comments that Hunter told him to act crazy first, because you can always act normal later. I loved that.

    Hunter was SANE. Right up to the end. People think he was insane, mentally ill, off his rocker, bat-country nuts.
    He wasn't.
    He was more conscious than people give him credit for. There is a beautiful scene of Hunter at his home at one point, with Hunter giving advice.
    He mentions Baghdad, and how a young soldier going over there to kill Muslims had better ask himself: "What's in it for me?"
    Because that is the only question you need to ask yourself when you are being asked to kill foreigners by your government.
    It's shit like that that makes me LOVE the man. He gave it to us STRAIGHT, no chaser. If you choose to ignore him and what he had to say and teach, then it truly is your loss. The man was a Titan. Balls of Steel. Freedom Incarnate.
    His lifestyle is hard to endorse, as his consumption of liquor and drugs was Herculean. Phenomenal levels of consumption.
    I like my herbal tea and a stiff drink, but Wowza could Hunter consume!
    Kieth Richards ain't got nothing on the Good Doctor.

    The doc opens with Hunter saying he worships music. We learn of him typing out passages from Hemingway, Faulkner and Fitzgerald to get the "music" of writing, feeling the power of good writing. He was charged with armed robbery as a youth and was offered jail or the military. He took the military. That decision allowed him to travel a lot and attempt to be a real writer. Nice old film clips of him as a youth. He says he was fired from every job he had. His ambition was to write his way through life. And did he ever do it....

    No one can write like Hunter. No One. You can try, but it will suck. I tried. You need a fierce lucidity and a true grasp of the power of words. Hunter said he liked the Holy Bible for the sheer music of the writing. He wasn't religious, but he believed in a "great loop" that we all on.
    He said he was "A Road Man for the Lords of Karma" and I like that a lot. Despite his madman persona, he was a human being who had deep-seated emotions and intensely real beliefs in how you should treat your fellow man, how you should operate on this Earth. He had principles, and he hated to see scum in power being tolerated by the people. (I am also of that mentality). Not only should the scum be pointed out, but publicly STOMPED. Shamed for all to see and remember.

    Who do we have today who comes from such a wild and great place? In Journalism? or Film? or ANY medium?
    No one.
    What a void we are left with.
    Last edited by Johann; 01-29-2013 at 08:20 AM.
    "Set the controls for the heart of the Sun" - Pink Floyd

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Ottawa Canada
    I am a firm believer in syncronicity (as Carl Jung understood it), and I bought a near-mint hardcover copy of GENERATION OF SWINE by Hunter last week. ($14- an awesome find)

    I always wondered what Hunter thought of Jim Morrison. I knew he was a fan of Jefferson Airplane, the Stones and Dylan, but I never actually read or heard him say anything about Jim or the Doors. Until I cracked Generation of Swine open. There it was, Hunter writing a piece so short and fucking sweet I nearly cried. I'll paraphrase now and add the actual quote later. It goes something like this:

    "Jim Morrison was a Special. On some nights The Doors were the best band in the World.
    Feel it in your Femurs.
    His eyes were smarter than James Dean's.
    His band could play with the King".

    Hunter also tells us about George Bush Senior, and how he arranged with the Saudis (King Fahd and crew) to fix oil prices for George's run for President. It backfired, but HE STILL WON THE WHITE HOUSE. What history book is that in? NONE. It's only in the Gonzo Papers vol. 2.

    He also talks about his trip to Montreal Canada, to cover the Sugar Ray Leonard/Roberto Duran fight. (Duran won). He talks about a club that I photographed when I visited the city last year: SUPER SEXE. His Canadian host took him there, to compare ops: Hunter was managing the O'Farrell theatre at the time. SYNCRONICITY, I SAY.....
    "Set the controls for the heart of the Sun" - Pink Floyd


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