“For No Good Reason’s” main selling point as a documentary is the interaction between Johnny Depp and Ralph Steadman, the British artist who’s best known for his collaboration with author Hunter S. Thompson. Steadman’s expressionistic, larger than life images of an America gone mad, coupled with Thompson’s gonzo journalism swagger, made for an iconic pairing. The doc investigates their close knit and frequently tumultuous relationship.
Although the pleasurable conceit of the documentary has Depp visiting Steadman at his Old Loose Court in Kent residence during one lazy day, “For No Good Reason” was shot over a 15-year period. Such a lengthy process did not deter filmmaker Charlie Paul, who found himself consistently intrigued by Steadman and his work.
“Ralph has been an artistic hero of mine since I was in art college,” said Paul. “To be allowed access into the world of someone like Ralph obviously was such an engaging thing for another artist to make a film about. Ralph is constantly surprising so there was never a time when I thought I’m running out of subject here. When things got dry, we’d turn ten degrees and suddenly a whole new world is there.”
I’ll be doing more posts on “For No Good Reason,” but for now check out this following clip as Charlie Paul discusses how having tons of footage on Steadman lead to his crafting an “honest” and “open” documentary (producer Lucy Paul is also heard in the clip):