Gonzo: The Life and Work of Hunter S. Thompson (2008) - Rotten Tomatoes

Gonzo: The Life and Work of Hunter S. Thompson (2008)



Critic Consensus: While not the comprehensive profile of the man that his die-hard fans might have hoped for, Gonzo remains an insightful introduction to the life of rebellious writer Hunter S. Thompson and his influences.

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Movie Info

Alex Gibney (director of (Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room) turns his attention from corporate scandal to Gonzo journalism with this tribute to the libido-driven, Wild Turkey-swilling writer who never knew the meaning of the word "excess." Comprised largely of never-before-seen archival materials, Gibney's film focuses on the years between 1965 and 1975, when Hunter S. Thompson was truly firing on all cylinders. Rare home movies, audiotapes, and excerpts from unpublished manuscripts combine to paint an affectionate portrait to the wild-eyed father of Gonzo journalism. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovimore
Rating: R (for drug and sexual content, language and some nudity)
Genre: Documentary, Special Interest
Directed By:
Written By: Alex Gibney
In Theaters:
On DVD: Nov 18, 2008
Box Office: $1.0M
Magnolia Pictures - Official Site

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Critic Reviews for Gonzo: The Life and Work of Hunter S. Thompson

All Critics (96) | Top Critics (28)

The film's plea that we need Thompson now more than ever is a little misty-eyed: Thompson's day was long gone by the time he put a gun to his head.

Full Review… | December 19, 2008
Time Out
Top Critic

Gonzo is an excellent reminder that Thompson was more than just a wild man. He was, at least for a time, a first-rate writer who covered his times and helped shape them.

Full Review… | October 30, 2008
Arizona Republic
Top Critic

The worshipfulness obscures the sadder aspects of Thompson's life, which is perhaps why Gibney focuses on the writer's 1965-75 golden years.

Full Review… | October 18, 2008
Christian Science Monitor
Top Critic

Thompson is dead but his skepticism survives. In the land of endless corruption, the muckraker is king, if only in the moral sense.

Full Review… | August 15, 2011
East Bay Express

This movie has confirmed my suspicion that people need to leave Hunter S. Thompson's story alone for a while.

Full Review… | March 24, 2011
What Culture

Alex Gibney's documentary (aligns) the Gonzo's descent into madness with the decline of American values.

Full Review… | August 9, 2010

Audience Reviews for Gonzo: The Life and Work of Hunter S. Thompson

Hunter S. Thompson was one of the most eccentric, unique writers in the literary genre. This is a great documentary about the life and legacy of Hunter S. Thompson. The film comprises interviews of people who knew Thompson and they talk about his legacy. I've read some of his work, and it is brilliant, eccentric, and bizarre, but above all original. Brilliantly captured on film, this is a film that not only tells Thompson's story, but takes a look at the time period of which he became famous. Although not a perfect documentary, this is a good enough film that will definitely appeal to his fans. I enjoyed the documentary and it was quite entertaining from start to finish. The interviews are very good and will definitely delight fans of the late author. Hunter S. Thompson was a unique author and an important one at that. This is a fine little film that should be seen. Although it is not for everyone, Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson is a well crafted documentary that is very good and overcomes its flaws due to the fact that it tells such a powerful story about one of the most legendary authors. The film not only focuses on his work, but on his life and his impact on the medium. After watching this film, you realize how important Hunter S. Thompson was. Often bizarre, but constantly entertaining and engaging, this is a well crafted documentary that you should see if you love Thompson's work, then definitely check this film out, you will definitely enjoy it. Hunter S. Thompson was a brilliant writer and an important one at that that made a huge impact on popular culture.

Alex roy

Super Reviewer


Well made and thorough account of Thmpson's bizarre life, if a little enthrall to the myth and very sympathetic to his vast shortcomings.

Gordon Anderson

Super Reviewer


a fairly engrossing account of the life and times of the eccentric writer, especially his glory days of the late 60's, early 70's. here was a man who sadly became trapped by his image and by his own estimation, lived more than 30 years of his life on borrowed time. interesting variety of guest stars, from pat buchanan to jimmy buffet. johnny depp's narration annoyed me but this is highly watchable for those with an interest in hst or the counterculture movement

Stella Dallas

Super Reviewer

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