A. Quinton — Jan. 15th 2013
“the EDGE“, a Vimeo Staff pick and the creation of Piotr Kabat, is a “little homage to Hunter S. Thompson based on a ‘Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson‘ excerpt.” Its style is evocative of Ralph Steadman‘s art, which accompanied much of Thompson’s work, but it’s layered with textures and shadows that I find more menacing than Steadman’s stark lines. The text, read here by Johnny Depp and quoted below, is adapted from Thompson’s 1966 book “Hell’s Angels: The Strange and Terrible Saga of the Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs“. I think Kabat does a wonderful job expressing the tangled thread of manic abandon and deep loneliness that runs through Thompson’s writing.
The werewolf connection is incidental – Thompson occasionally used the werewolf as a metaphor for those who untethered their predatory madness when they thought no one was looking – but I like Thompson’s writing, Depp’s reading and Kabat’s animation, so… enjoy!
…it was always at night, like a werewolf, that I would take the thing out for an honest run down the coast. I would start in Golden Gate Park, thinking only to run a few long curves to clear my head. The momentary freedom of the park was like the one unlucky drink that shoves an alcoholic off the wagon. In a matter of minutes I’d be out at the beach with the sound of the engine in my ears, the surf booming up on the sea wall and a fine empty road stretching all the way down to Santa Cruz. There was no helmet on those nights, no speed limit, and no cooling it down on the curves. Then into second gear, forgetting the cars and letting the beast wind out … thirty-five, forty-five… then into third, not worried about green or red signals, but only some other werewolf loony. …now there’s no sound except wind. The needle leans down on a hundred, and wind-burned eyeballs strain to see down the centerline… no room at all for mistakes. and that’s when the strange music starts. The Edge … There is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over. The others – the living – are those who pushed their control as far as they felt they could handle it, and then pulled back, or slowed down. But the edge is still out there.