Ben (Viggo Mortensen) raises his children under a strict survivalist patriarchy in the woods. They wear caked mud as camouflage to stalk and hunt game. They train in knife combat. At night they read books on quantum mechanics and high literature. It is an extreme form of home schooling, in a way, if home was a forest and school taught you how to skin a deer.
Ben is trying, but he is a loving father. The family’s life appears serene in its isolation and in spite of nature’s harshness, but, like the ever-pressing power of globalization, the outside world Continue reading Captain Fantastic (2016) Movie Review
Swiss Army Man begins with Hank (Paul Dano) about to hang himself, a corpse washing upon shore, and lots and lots of farting. The movie is, in short, a story of friendship between a stranded man and a corpse. This corpse, named Manny (Daniel Radcliffe), has special bodily abilities that have the capacity to help Hank find civilization again.
The film initially holds a tone, and some early shots, that are reminiscent of Wes Anderson’s more subdued works. It is quirky, endearing, and strangely blunt. However, as the film progresses it becomes apparent that this is a film with an authorial stamp of its own.
Radcliffe is fascinating as the deadpan human tool. Manny’s lack of worldview makes up much of what Continue reading Swiss Army Man (2016) Movie Review