Woody Harrelson is incredibly underrated as one of the most versatile and talented dramatic and comedic actors of his generation, both on the big and small screens. In 1985, Cheers faced a casting crisis when beloved actor Nicholas Colasanto died. To replace him behind the bar, they cast an unknown young Woody Harrelson who only went on to be Emmy nominated six times for playing Woody Boyd: Cheers‘ clueless and lovable little brother. But in the 25 years since Cheers‘ end, Harrelson has put together one of the most impressive resumes of any actor working. His range is astounding: from goofball to serial killer to an impressive series of military and law enforcement characters (both good and evil) and back again to goofball. There are some performers for whom it’s a struggle to put together 10 pieces of work and an honorable mention. Woody could have had a whole second list, and he’s only continuing to get better. Continue reading Woody Harrelson’s 10 Best Movies→
Martin McDonagh is a weird dude. For those of you who haven’t seen In Bruges, his first feature, it’s very difficult for me to describe…really anything he does. Here’s the simple review: if you liked In Bruges, you’ll like Seven Psychopaths. If you hated In Bruges, you’ll loathe Seven Psychopaths. McDonagh has clearly established an idiom all his own and is, if nothing else, a completely unique filmmaker in a derivative age.
I utterly loved this movie. Loved it and the rating I’m giving it is reflective of my taste. However, I would be perfectly respectful of someone who watched it and thought it was the biggest load of nonsense they’d ever seen. This isn’t Citizen Kane. It’s a preference movie. If your sense of humor can run black as pitch and you don’t mind it being profane and exceedingly violent (hilariously so on occasion), this is your movie. A sense of humor is a very tough thing to recommend or legislate with a review. I am of the opinion that things are funny to a person or not and it’s not so much the material as how much you connect with it or it’s commentary on the world. That’s going to be subjective and is why it’s a lot harder to review or recommend comedies than dramas. A sense of humor is a personal thing. Personally, I think McDonagh is a profoundly disturbed, hilarious writer and a talented director.
Seven Psychopaths is presumptively about two psychopaths (Sam Rockwell and Christopher Walken) who make their living kidnapping dogs from wealthy people and then returning them for the reward. This goes awry when they kidnap the dog of a mob boss (Woody Harrelson) who happens to be psychopathic himself. Colin Farrell plays their friend sucked into their madness and as things go, the film gets increasingly meta and complex so much so to the point that there was a fantastic reveal involving a cravat (best use of cravats in cinematic history) and I blurted out loud, “That is awesome! ….wait…what?”
McDonagh’s ultimate talent is that in the midst of his madness and chaos he can create characters you come to care very deeply about (very flawed though they may be) and then grounding the film in that connection so it’s a wonderful mix of mad humor and character-driven plot. If this makes no sense, I completely understand and will refer you to my simpler review above. I had a blast with this film and I can’t wait to watch it again. 9.0/10