Friday, July 04, 2008

Gonzo


I haven't seen Gonzo, the Hunter Thompson doc from Alex Gibney, but here's A.O. Scott's review in the International Herald Tribune.

Very happy to see mention of Carey McWilliams, of course, who first suggested that Thompson write about the Hell's Angels. That was a game changer, as Thompson always acknowledged. Throughout his career, he consistently admired and respected only one editor--Carey McWilliams. This according to Douglas Brinkley in Proud Highways, Thompson's edited letters.

And let's not forget the Ramparts connection. Thompson was living on Parnassus Street in San Francisco during the magazine's heyday. After Peter Collier reviewed Hell's Angels, he brought Thompson by the office at 301 Broadway for lunch with Warren Hinckle. Let's just say that the result wasn't healthy for Hinckle's pet monkey, Henry Luce.

Later Thompson hung with the Ramparts cohort at the Democratic convention in Chicago. He also borrowed the magazine's wall poster idea for later use in Aspen. And he eventually wrote the first generally recognized piece of Gonzo journalism, "The Kentucky Derby Is Decadent and Depraved," for Hinckle's subsequent magazine, Scanlan's Monthly.

The photograph above is one of my favorites. I wanted to use it in American Prophet, but I couldn't track down a quality image or the rights holder.

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