For those of you who know me, you know that I do love my rum, and when I heard that there was a movie called the The Rum Diary I was excited as could be. I mean come on! It was another Hunter S. Thompson novel adapted for the big screen starring Johnny Depp...just like Fear And Loathing in Las Vegas. So it's gonna be Fear and Loathing meets Jack Sparrow, right? NOPE, NO WAY!
It's the story of Paul Kemp (Depp) a freelance writer from New York who travels to Puerto Rico to work for a downtrodden newspaper. And of course, just like in all newspaper movies he has an unbearable editor played by Richard Kenkins (you might remember him as the dad in Step Brothers). Paul meets up with a well connected and wealthy business man named Sanderson played by Aaron Eckhart, and is invited to join a business venture all the while lusting over Sandersons girlfriend Chenault. Let's be honest...it's a stupid name, but she's played by Amber Heard so they could have called her anything and I wouldn't have cared.
As the story unfolds, and the paper closes, Paul sees the dirty underside of this business deal he was asked to join. He's left trying to find a way to expose the crooks for who they really are and win the girl.
Giovanni Rabisi delivers a solid performance as a drugged up drunk writer and roommate to Paul. Depp's performance doesn't fail either but the laughs are few and far between. Yes there are some high points, but at the end of the movie you are left wondering "what the hell happened to the rest of the movie?"
As with most movies - I missed this in the theatre, in part because Ray is too cheap to write off either movie tickets or my AppleTV rentals as a business expense. This was just released last week on DVD, Blu-Ray, and iTunes. I walked away from this finding it "ok". I didn't mind the $4.99 rental fee, but would not buy it either. All in all I have to say it really did disappoint. The Rum Diary is NOT Bro Council, Approved.