Saturday, November 3, 2012

Seven Psychopaths (Rhoades)

“Seven Psychopaths”
Is a Psycho Comedy

Reviewed by Shirrel Rhoades

What do Colin Farrell, Christopher Walken, Sam Rockwell, Woody Harrelson, Tom Waits, Abbie Kornish, and Olga Kurylenki have in common? They all star in the movie “Seven Psychopaths,” the new psycho crime comedy directed by Martin McDonagh.
But don’t jump to conclusions. While the characters these seven actors play may be psychopaths, the title actually refers to the title of a screenplay that Marty Faranan (Farrell) is trying to write.
His pal Billy Bickle (Rockwell) is being as supportive as an unemployed actor and part-time dog thief can be. His partner in crime is a religious nutcase named Hans Kieslowski (Walken). Unfortunately, they steal the Shih Tzu belonging to gangster Charlie Costello (Harrelson), a violent man who would think nothing of killing anyone connected to this dognapping.
Caught in the middle, Marty might just get some good material for his screenplay if he lives to write it.
As one moviegoer describes it, “This is a writer’s film – the subplots (really, borderline vignettes) about the various psychopaths that Marty encounters are well done, their back stories unfold at different paces, and their details that connect them to the central plot are creatively deployed ... Every time the story started to get even a little generic, wild cards came firing in from all sides.”
The screenplay for “Seven Psychopaths” (the movie, not the one in the movie) was written by British-born-but-Irish-affiliated Martin McDonagh, who also directed the film.
McDonagh began his career by scripting radio plays that never got produced, but taught him how to write great dialogue. That led to an award-winning career as a playwright.
“I’ve been on a treadmill of plays in London and New York,” he says. “It’s a great treadmill to be on, but I finally had to step back and maybe live a little bit more and grow up and travel and see what kind of writer or person I’ve become.”
This is Martin McDonagh’s second film, a follow-up to “In Burges.” You’ll find “Seven Psychopaths” playing this week at the Tropic Cinema.
People coming out of the theater will likely describe it as “a weird, twisted, quirky movie that makes fun of itself,” “dark and witty,” “offbeat and funny,” and “a smart (but dark) comedy about characters who aren't nearly as smart as they see themselves.” Expect some gruesome (or should that be “gratuitous”?) violence. And you’ll enjoy some great oddball performances.
You might think this is an amalgam of Guy Richie, Quentin Tarantino, and The Coen Brothers. But it’s clearly McDonagh’s film – the story of an Irish writer named Marty writing a screenplay called “Seven Psychopaths.” Get it?

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