Everyone tries so hard at getting this adaptation of Hunter S Thompson's gonzo classic just right that one would love to like it more. Certainly, Gilliam pulls out the stops with the hallucinatory madness - the film does at least look good - and Depp and Del Toro, as the drug deranged heroes exploring the darkest excesses of the American Dream in 1971 Vegas, give their energetic all. The trouble is, they end up mugging like mad, and it's all too relentlessly weird, wacky and tacky: it takes an hour before the pace calms down sufficiently to let in a few laughs, and only Barkin, in a brief (and superior) scene towards the end anchors the manic antics in some sort of human reality. A film of brilliant moments, but sadly less coherent - and, on senses, rather less personal - than most of Gilliam's work.
Cast and crew
|Screenwriter:||Tony Grisoni, Tod Davies, Alex Cox, Terry Gilliam|
Benicio Del Toro
Harry Dean Stanton