Sunday, 20 January 2013

Seven Psychopaths (2012)

A British black comedy but you wouldn't really think it, this could almost be another Tarantino cauldron of tales all mixed together. Hell even the films poster has a Guy Ritchie look n feel to it, this could easily of been another cockney crime comedy with the usual suspects cast, in other words more of the same over used cockneys. Instead we have a Pacific coast take that normally wouldn't make me batter an eyelid but the cast is terrific.

The films kicks off with a typical Tarantino-ish in your face sequence (yes I promise not to try and use Tarantino anymore). Its simply two hitmen having a chat about killing folk in a quirky manner, your average day for some hitmen, just your average Tarant...oh shit! Now this isn't really a spoiler as it doesn't effect the film sooooo...some hooded bloke walks up behind these guys and shoots them both in the head at point blank range. Now this is a close up moment and doesn't beat around the bush. BANG! we're off to a cracking start and I'm whimpering from the gore.

Talking of gore, this film has it, a little torture gore, but mainly outfight blowing people away gore with nice bloody squibs. Yet despite this there isn't a huge amount of violence, unlike a certain gore hooked director whose initials are QT. The film actually limits the blood n gore but gives you just enough, just enough to keep you happy but not disgust you (almost).

The plot is fairly straight forward but with some clever tiny twists and surprises, but nothing overly outstanding. Farrell's character is writing a movie screenplay called 'Seven Psychopaths' and is using his friends to help him along the way. His friends being Rockwell and Walken, the latter seems to be playing a parody of himself to a degree, and the criminal/underground world from which we know him in his career.

The story concept Farrell's character is trying to create seems to unfold before him in reality unexpectedly, this leads to much more in depth research on killers than he would have liked. From this we get a nice sub plot about another psycho played by Waits whose character flits in and out of the main story but adds a nice charm if I can say that. The whole film is more or less a parody of your typical Hollywood twisted crime thrillers, almost a homage to Tarantino (argh!), Ritchie or Matthew Vaughn even, whilst slightly mocking them at the same time.

What I like about this film is how each psycho is brought to your attention throughout the film. Its not too hard to work out what's gonna happen as characters reveal themselves and the unpredictable gangster boss played by Harrelson takes pursuit. The story does tend to drift somewhat from the midway point as we near the finale, it does get a bit more cartoony and loses its edge.

The story is somewhat cliched and an average crime thriller but the characters do save the day luckily. The film isn't as funny as it would like to think it is and the violence can seem a touch uncomfortable as it swings back and forth with emotional moments. The more I think about it this film isn't quite as clever as Mr Director would have you believe but it does amuse thanks to a nice cast.