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
Michelle (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), in the process of leaving her boyfriend, suddenly becomes party to a car wreck. She awakens in a concrete room chained to the wall. An effectively desperate Winstead struggles just to reach her phone in a tense scene that culminates in the menacing introduction of Michelle’s captor Howard (John Goodman).
This early standoff between Winstead and Goodman is fascinating, although it would have played better with Continue reading 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016) Movie Review
Faults begins with a cold open in a diner, where Ansel Roth (Leland Orser), a washed up expert on de-programming former cult members, is furiously eating a meal that he is unable to pay for. After a sparsely attended seminar in a hotel, a couple approaches Ansel about their daughter Claire’s (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) involvement in a cult called Faults. Ansel, struggling with financial problems, agrees to kidnap Claire in order to counteract the brainwashing Faults has placed on her.
Claire responds to her kidnapping in a partly normal, partly eccentric way. She doesn’t sleep, opting instead to stare at a television set of static through the first night of her capture. She holds back threats of Continue reading Faults (2014) Movie Review
The Spectacular Now is a teen romantic drama starring Miles Teller and Shailene Woodley. James Ponsoldt’s (Smashed) film follows high school senior Sutter Keely (Teller) as he struggles with relationships, family, and his impending adulthood. Continue reading The Spectacular Now (2013) Review