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For No Good Reason (2014)


Average Rating: 6.2/10
Reviews Counted: 56
Fresh: 35
Rotten: 21

Critics Consensus: For No Good Reason is a solid but surface-level look at gonzo artist Ralph Steadman's artistry and eccentricities.

Average Rating: 6.5/10
Reviews Counted: 23
Fresh: 16
Rotten: 7

Critics Consensus: For No Good Reason is a solid but surface-level look at gonzo artist Ralph Steadman's artistry and eccentricities.


Average Rating: 3.4/5
User Ratings: 2,125


Movie Info

Experience 15 years in the life of acclaimed illustrator Ralph Steadman, whose surreal, often confrontational artwork is frequently associated with Gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson thanks to such books as Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and The Curse of Lono. A look back at Steadman's remarkable career offers a glimpse into his vivid imagination as interviews with Johnny Depp, Terry Gilliam, Richard E. Grant, Tim Robbins and others offer insight into the man behind the legend. Meanwhile, … More

R (for language, some drug content and brief sexual images)
Musical & Performing Arts , Documentary
Directed By:
In Theaters:
Sep 2, 2014
Box Office:
Sony Pictures Classics - Official Site

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Critic Reviews for For No Good Reason

All Critics (56) | Top Critics (23) | Fresh (35) | Rotten (21)

Meet Ralph Steadman and his nightmare visions of a world in pain, revealed in a mesmerizing documentary.

Full Review… | June 5, 2014
Seattle Times
Top Critic

The film makes it clear that not only was Steadman perfect for Thompson's work (and a big part of his success), his work stands on its own artistically.

Full Review… | May 29, 2014
Arizona Republic
Top Critic

Giving an overlooked luminary his due is reason enough for "For No Good Reason."

Full Review… | May 29, 2014
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic

As wonderful as it is to watch the man work, and to review many of the startling images he created over the years, the film has its dead spots.

Full Review… | May 29, 2014
Detroit News
Top Critic

This is most worthwhile for its scenes of Steadman at work, flinging ink all over the place and turning the splatter marks into his signature grotesques.

Full Review… | May 22, 2014
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

For No Good Reason sidelines Steadman's own bona fides, functioning primarily as a second-hand documentary of Thompson, stoking the hagiography of the late hipster icon.

Full Review… | May 16, 2014
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

Steadman's illustrations could burst with baroque details, but one thing you would never call them is "busy." They had a focus, a mission, that "For No Good Reason" often lacks.

Full Review… | October 10, 2014
Madison Movie

[For No Good Reason] paints a strong portrait of the illustrator through archival footage, photography, and long discussions with Steadman about his artistic process.

Full Review… | August 15, 2014
Under the Radar

A film for admirers of artist Ralph Steadman, people whose politics align with Steadman's politics and the most devoted followers of Steadman's celebrity fan, Johnny Depp.

Full Review… | July 11, 2014
Advocate (Baton Rouge, LA)

It's most compelling when the focus is on Steadman, allowing him to describe his feelings about fame and his artistic process - or perhaps more accurately, the method to his madness.

Full Review… | June 30, 2014

The movie always circles back to Thompson, as if Steadman were a tetherball attached to the writer. In this way, Paul doesn't quite justify the need for a feature film about his subject (as opposed to, say, a profile segment on '60 Minutes').

Full Review… | June 20, 2014
Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)

Though friendly and humorous in his jaunty nautical cap, Steadman seems reluctant to give much away about his private life. Fortunately his work - scabrous, anarchic and utterly merciless - more than speaks for itself.

Full Review… | June 20, 2014
Total Film

Instead of embracing the chaotic discovery that Steadman personifies, the film ends up being merely a paint-by-numbers.

Full Review… | June 12, 2014
Austin Chronicle

Paul's frenetic assemblage strives in vain for the cinematic equivalent of Steadman's splotchy urgency.

Full Review… | June 6, 2014
SF Weekly

The film has some slow spots; at times, it reaches pretention, but overall it is an interesting portrait of a contradictory individual who is proud of his work, yet questions whether or not it had any impact on the world.

Full Review… | June 5, 2014
Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)

For 89 madcap minutes, Paul and interviewer Johnny Depp conduct a surface-level whistle-stop tour of the artist's life, never once outstaying our curiosity.

Full Review… | June 5, 2014
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

The artist often doesn't even get to take center stage in his own movie.

Full Review… | June 5, 2014
Las Vegas Weekly

Even if we don't quite get to know the man, the visionary violence of Steadman's acid pen emerges to vivid effect, partly though Kevin Richards's animations, and despite Depp's sometimes over-eager respect.

Full Review… | June 1, 2014
Observer [UK]

[A] low-key, workmanlike documentary.

Full Review… | May 30, 2014

Paul struggles to contain Steadman's profligate energies in 90 minutes, and the waning presence of Johnny Depp, loitering between poor career choices to pull on a cigarillo and point at pictures, can't give it shape.

Full Review… | May 29, 2014

A mewling yet occasionally deafening - and seemingly arbitrary - soundtrack overflowing with upstart folk-rock nobodies adds little to the experience.

Full Review… | May 29, 2014
Little White Lies

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