Ricky's Film Reviews

Bringing you honest reviews of recent releases

Swiss Army Man

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A hopeless man stranded on a deserted island befriends a dead body and together they go on a surreal journey to get home.

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Cast

Paul Dano – Hank

Daniel Radcliffe – Manny

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Dead

I hated this movie. I really did. It unfortunately turned out to be one of those things where every element – direction, actors, script, concept and messages being portrayed – irritated me. Ultimately there was absolutely no point to Swiss Army Man at all, and at least 90% of it didn’t make sense. If anyone out there can prove me wrong, then please do enlighten me. I would love to know how a man riding a farting corpse across the sea has any relevance to today’s society.
How dialogue between a living man and a corpse about masturbation and semen portrays a crucial message to viewers.
Or how Paul Dano dressing as a female and flirting with said corpse is in any way interesting.
Call me boring, but for the love of FUCK – Dano and Radcliffe display some terrible cinematic moments together which are as far from entertaining as you can possibly get.

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(no, he’s not ‘bumming’ him in the above pic. Hard to believe, I know)

Swiss Army Man was obviously an attempt at delving into the human psyche by producer Eval Rimmon. It is bursting with conversation about the meaning of life, how and why we feel love, etc. (the type of conversations which take place between a drunk pair of friends at two o’clock in the morning after a wild night). This bored me. I have seen way too many movies where top subject on the list is ‘love’ – second subject is ‘why we feel love’, blah blah.. it gets tedious after a while. And Swiss Army Man jumped corpse-first into the cliché genre instead of following its own unique path. Given the setting, this movie could have been something new. It didn’t though, it was just another default attempt at being artistic. Points lost here.

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Beard or No Beard

Dano spends most of the movie being weird (mainly due to his character’s lack of food and water I think). One scene sees him create a ‘bus’ in the middle of the wilderness, then dress as a woman and act out a flirtatious scene with Manny (the corpse). One of them is playing a girl he sees on his bus journey in his normal life – the other is the girl.
I was sat with my chin resting on my hand during this, eyes slightly (but not entirely – points scored for myself here) glazing over. I was bored. And my reaction was a blend of:
slight disgust,
tedious,
pointless..
Not disgusted in such an extreme sense, but my reaction included a slight grimace with an eye-roll. Is there even a word to describe this feeling?

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I love pointing out the obvious; and I did happen to notice Hank suddenly gains access to a fully working razor halfway through the story. The scruffy, near-dying man has some big facial hair. And then the scene shifts into the next and it’s vanished. He might not have food, or water, or clothing, but the grooming kit is definitely on hand.
Good work! (yes, that’s sarcasm).

There wasn’t much distinction between what was real life and what was (could have been) a hallucination. Most of the action comes across very dream-like and misty, leading into action that is not – in the end simply becoming a blur of complete crap. And in the end, I couldn’t tell (or should that be couldn’t give a shit?) if Hank finally discovering people was a dream or not – especially as what happens when faced with these people is just ridiculous.

At the very end of Swiss Army Man I was surprised that the island the protagonist is stranded on (miles from civilisation) suddenly sprouts a fully populated suburban neighbourhood. Hank treks through a massive desert island jungle in total despair.. and then comes out of the other side of the jungle to find a habitable village. Mysterious? Or just plain ridiculous?

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What Went Right

The only part of Swiss Army Man I enjoyed was Radcliffe’s bizarre character. How the corpse gets washed up and then starts offering swiss army-style services to Hank is actually quite witty. The way Radcliffe played it was great too, offering viewers shivery mannerisms and strange dialogue. Not a bad show from him, however much the actor irritates me. I’ll let the fact he smiles downwards slide – just not his face.

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See that?
See how his smile doesn’t actually go up?
Weird.

That’s it.
I refuse to waste any more time reviewing this one. To wrap up, Swiss Army Man is crap and not worth paying to see at all. The concept is all there and is entertaining in places, it’s just the producer’s way of laying a load of in-depth emo bullshit on the viewer. Why do we love? What is love?..

Who gives a shit?! Just get on with the movie and let us audience discover that for ourselves!
(applications welcome for Winter Boyfriend by the way).
Emoji smirk.

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This entry was posted on November 5, 2016 by .
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