In Theaters: “Magic Trip”

Just when the festival-goers are anticipating the third Alex Gibney film of the year (hockey doc “The Last Gladiators,” which bows at Toronto next month), regular folk finally get to see the Oscar winner’s first (on the big screen): “Magic Trip: Ken Kesey’s Search for a Kool Place” debuted at Sundance back in January and is now hitting theaters in NYC, San Francisco, Berekely and Santa Cruz. Other engagements start next weekend and continue through October (see play dates here). Check out the trailer here.

Co-directed by Alison Ellwood, the doc chronicles Kesey’s cross-country road trip with his Merry Pranksters and their rainbow-colored bus, Further, in 1964. It has actually been on VOD for over a month now, so I guess this isn’t the first time regular eyes have their chance to see it. Anyway, I reviewed the flick back in March from the Miami International Film Festival, and here’s an excerpt:

I don’t see the point. Is its supposed to be a Kesey biopic? Another unneeded celebration of the 60s? A pseudo adaptation of Wolfe’s book? I guess we can later appreciate this doc more once an actual dramatic adaptation of “Electric Kool-Aid” is produced as promised/threatened.

If that doesn’t keep you away, go ahead and check it out. As with most of my reviews, I’ll provide a trio of ingredients:

Recommended If You Like: Tom Wolfe’s “The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test”; romanticizing the 1960s; Gibney’s “Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson”

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About Christopher Campbell
I am a blogger for Documentary Channel and Movies.com, where I write the Doc Talk column. I prefer real stories to fake ones. I tweet here: @thefilmcynic

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