Quickie: Seven Psychopaths

Seven PsychopathsMarty (Colin Farrell) is a screenwriter with writer’s block. However, when his best friend Billy (Sam Rockwell) kidnaps a gangster’s beloved Shih Tzu, Marty becomes involved and gets more inspiration than he was hoping for.

2008’s In Bruges was somewhat of a cult hit, so when writer Martin McDonagh returned with Seven Psychopaths, there was a fair bit of anticipation. Whilst it doesn’t quite live up to the aforementioned Belgium-based rib tickler, Seven Psychopaths still has a lot going for it, particularly its witty script and some excellent performances. Rockwell and Christopher Walken especially give top-notch performances and steal pretty much every scene they’re in. Farrell also seems much more at home in this type of thing than straight up action films.

The story is somewhat scatterbrain with characters and plot threads jumping here, there and everywhere (a metaphor for scriptwriting and writer’s block?), but the interesting characters and sometimes hilarious dialogue keep it glued together. It is a brilliant script that has huge amounts to dwell upon once the credits roll and is a film that almost demands a second viewing. It’s also full of self-referential moments that tread the line of clever and covering up for the odd occasion of lazy writing, but it’s nowhere near enough to spoil what is a worthy follow up to McDonagh’s debut, even if it doesn’t quite hit the same high notes.

Chris

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16 thoughts on “Quickie: Seven Psychopaths

  1. ckckred says:

    I was planning to see this in theaters but missed it while it was playing. I’ll try to catch it on DVD. Nice review.

  2. ruth says:

    Hi Terry! The premise of this one sounds like a hoot, I quite like stories about writer’s block. Well, since I just talked about In Bruges in my post, I have a feeling I’ll enjoy this one too.

  3. CMrok93 says:

    Good review. Everybody here seems to be having a ball with this script and how could you not? It’s snappy, dark, hilarious, and altogether, unpredictable as to where the hell it’s going to go next. That’s what I always like to see in my crime movies, actually, just movies in general.

  4. sati says:

    I really can’t wait to see it, I missed the chance when it was in the theaters :( I just hope nothing happens to that beautiful Shih Tzu!

    • I really hope you get to see it, I thoroughly enjoyed it and am looking forward to seeing it again. As for the Shih Tzu, I don’t want to spoil anything but as Sam Rockwell’s character says at one point “you can’t kill animal in movies, only women”, which should give you some clue ;)

  5. I liked it a lot. Is it a bit of a mess, like you say? Sure… but the hysterical characters are well worth it along the way :D Rockwell was off of his gourd!

    • Rockwell was absolutely brilliant, some of the stuff he came out with was pure gold! It was a bit messy but I took that as a bit of a metaphor for how scripts are written, with bits of plot and characters moving all over the place. I enjoyed it immensely though, had several moments where I laughed out loud.

  6. Nice rveiew. Not terribly excited for this one but still want to check it out.

  7. Mark Walker says:

    I thought In Bruges was a little flawed but I liked it. This is one I’m desperate to see for the cast alone. So far from the mcDonaughs though, The Guard is the best film.

    • I loved The Guard, they really do have a talent for writing a script. I’d struggle to pick a favourite between all three to be honest. The cast really is great in this, some of the performances are brilliant and it’s well worth checking out just for those.

  8. r361n4 says:

    This pretty much perfectly sums up my opinion of the movie. I think I was just so much of a fan of In Bruges that I was disappointed when this didn’t impress me quite as much, but all in all it is a very ambitious film. I think my biggest problem was how overhyped the roles of the women were in this movie, they probably collectively get about 5 minutes of screen time whereas the poster advertised them as being part of the seven

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