No, really. That’s an actual thing that happens in Swiss Army Man.
The adventure-dramedy penned and helmed by Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert centers on a man (Paul Dano) whose first-act escape from a desert island comes from using a beached corpse (Daniel Radcliffe) as a fart-powered conveyance back to civilization.
Swiss Army Man earned early attention at the Sundance Film Festival thanks to this Variety headline:
However, walk-outs are a pretty standard part of film festivals. For one thing, if a critic or buyer thinks the pic isn’t shaping up to be worth their time, they may (and often do) bail to make it to a different movie’s screening. So what did the critics who didn’t bail think of Daniel Radcliffe’s weirdest movie since Victor Frankenstein with its “pus in the mouth” humping scene?
Jordan Hoffman of The Guardian warns farting corpse jet ski (a band name that demands to be snatch up now) is just the beginning, “the movie’s only about to get weirder.” And he praised the film’s “sort of Michel Gondry-like spirit, shattering reality with crafty set-pieces drawn from the characters’ imagination.”
Angie Han of Slash Film declares this jet ski thing is really a litmus test. If you’re grossed out, bail at will. But if you’re intrigued, “you’ll discover a unique, oddly gorgeous adventure anchored by a superb performance from Radcliffe as a dead body (no, really).”
Erin Whitney at Screen Crush notes The Daniels (as this directing duo is known) brings the same level of lunacy to their feature film as they did to Lil Jon’s devotedly bonkers “Turn Down For What” video. She writes “It’s like these two filmmakers watched Cast Away, tripped on Peyote in the woods, shared personal stories, and Swiss Army Man was the result.”
Just about every review warns that most of its humor is of the scatological variety. But Variety’s Peter Debruge argues, it “leverages what’s laugh-worthy about such bodily functions in service of a greater life lesson — namely, that it’s full of reasons for living.”
So, the buzz is good for this unapologetically bizarre pic. But what distributor will be bold enough to buy this beyond kooky boy-meets-corpse buddy comedy?
Kristy Puchko lives in
perpetual fear that ice cream will become self-aware New York City.