The Rum Diary

The Rum Diary

Bruce Robinson (2011)

15 Certificate


Our Score
The misadventures of Johnny Depp's boozy journalist in sun-splashed Puerto Rico circa 1960 constitute this much-awaited return to the screen for writer/director Bruce Robinson, long revered for his classic 1987 comedy Withnail & I. Substance-fuelled raucous humour also marks this serio-comic story, in which the protagonist shambles his way through mischief-making episodes towards a deeper appreciation of the corruption despoiling his paradisal surroundings. Depp is essentially playing the young Hunter S Thompson - the maverick journalist on whose early novel the film is based - and his relaxed demeanour here proves far more engaging than his previous mannered impersonation of the writer in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Robinson, back in the director's chair after a 19-year absence, takes his time in exploring a madcap array of hacks and hangers-on (Aaron Eckhart is deliciously slimy as a property wheeler-dealer), delivering plenty of local colour but slightly flagging in impetus. Still, if the end result doesn't quite manage to stir up the indignation Robinson obviously intends, it's still a creditable and very likeable offering.


A New York journalist tires of America in the early 1960s, and relocates to Puerto Rico, where he works for a local paper and throws himself into the decadent local lifestyle. His obsession with a woman who has also arrived from the States leads to him getting mixed up in the corrupt dealings of her property tycoon fiance. Comedy drama based on Hunter S Thompson's novel, starring Johnny Depp, Aaron Eckhart, Amber Heard and Giovanni Ribisi. In English and Spanish.

Cast & Crew

Paul Kemp Johnny Depp
Sanderson Aaron Eckhart
Bob Sala Michael Rispoli
Chenault Amber Heard
Lotterman Richard Jenkins
Moberg Giovanni Ribisi
Segurra Amaury Nolasco
Donavon Marshall Bell
Director Bruce Robinson
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Other Information

Language: English, Spanish +subtitlesColourTheatrical distributor: EntertainmentGuidance: Swearing and drug abuse.Available on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 11 Nov 2011
Drama Comedy