Seven Psychopaths isn’t EXACTLY what the title suggests, or is it? Technically it is, but the fact is it is a Movie inside of a “Movie”. You may question my meaning, but the movie involves an intriguing script and whence you see the film you will TRULY understand what the hell I am talking about. You have to see the entire film to completely understand the title, and when you DO, you will not be disappointed; at least I wasn’t.
Seven Psychopaths is a movie in which we see the development of multiple characters also developing the story, or so it would seem. The opening of the film offers what some may deem a “Tarrintino” style conversation, but what it does is offer some laughs and an introduction. This is along the lines of “Pulp Fiction” in a different sort of way. The, somewhat, main character is named Martin (after what can be conceived) is that of Writer/Director Martin McDonagh. Martin is played by Collin Farrell, and is a down on his luck screenwriter who is searching for an idea, while also being a closeted alcoholic, writing a screenplay that it is in development.
He seeks to find any and all “help” for his latest screenplay, which is also the title of the movie. His best friend is a down and out actor named Billy (who is BRILLIANTLY played by Sam Rockwell). Billy can’t seem to hold an audition in his favor, thus he steals dogs he finds various people walking in the dog park. Billy is not alone in this line of work; his accomplice is Hans (Christopher Walken, in a TRULY great performance). While Martin knows the line of work Billy is involved in, he attempts to offer him help in his further roles. Martin allows Billy to know the screenplay that he is currently writing, and Billy lovingly, and somewhat unknowingly, shows Billy a point of reference to his current screenplay. This is a slow, yet at times, a great build up. It holds the attention of everyone, and still gives the viewer something to laugh at as the movie builds. The build is unique . . . it adds unexpected laughs and allows the viewer to understand each of the characters.
Billy continues to go about his constant line of work, which seemingly pays off, with Hans. Billy, unfortunately, steals the dog of a rather well known “Crime Boss” of the area; Charlie (Woody Harrelson). Charlie, so upset by the loss of his beloved Shih-Tzu, questions the person who was walking the dog at the disappearance. Martin, with Billy’s “help” discovers that he has written an ad for help in research of the screenplay Martin is writing. Only one response is to be had, but it sets up a truly excellent scene.
The person who responded is Zachariah (Tom Waits), and upon his arrival Billy leaves, with an excuse, and Martin listens to a truly well written story. This part of the movie added so much for me; I am a Tom Waits fan, but beyond that was such an unbelievable story that needs to be seen to be appreciated. Also, while Martin is alone contemplating, in Billy’s house, the events that have occurred, Martin stumbles upon Billy’s “journal” that offers some insight into who Billy is. The scene is one of laughs and reflection. The questioning leads to the conclusion that multiple occurrences of missing dogs have happened in the same area, and the search begins. Of course, from the previews, we all KNOW who has the dog; Billy. Thus the search and the movie truly begin to take shape. Martin, due to unfortunate circumstances, meets Hans for the first time. The movie has established several storylines by this point; you TRULY need to see it to understand, and this continues to the next part of the story.
Billy, Martin, and Hans have hit the road to escape the doom that may possibly meet them. Martin is gaining more and more experience to write his screenplay, and hearing multiple stories; including what he has witnessed firsthand is adding to the screenplay as well. Around a campfire, in a remote place, Martin asks Billy and Hans for possible inspiration. Both look at him in a questionable wonderment about what he is truly asking from both of them. Billy then explains the ending of the screenplay, in a scene where Sam Rockwell shows his BRILLIANCE, we get insight to a scene that is described and played out for the viewers. This scene shows the genuine ability of the screenplay and the ability of the actors in the movie. Some may say it is over the top, but I feel that is what makes the movie. It ties all the “Psychopaths” together and adds a little something for those who like the “Ultra Violence”. The dialogue between the characters and everything also adds something that is missing in some of the slower scenes, but the movie has yet to reach the TRUE climax.
The climax of the movie is understandably how the characters would WANT it to end, and after the build, the viewers would expect nothing less. We now have the understanding of who everyone is, but do we “Truly” understand what has yet to be told. The final scenes do offer closure in a unique way that gives credit to everyone involved with the movie. Hans gives direction, Billy has his “ending” and Martin has his script, or so he believes. Stay after part of the credits to TRULY understand what I mean.
Seven Psychopaths is in fact a movie that incorporates all the Directors and Screenwriters that I LOVE. This movie isn’t TRULY for everyone, but I believe a majority will be happy with the product. Martin McDonagh does a great job of writing a unique screenplay, and also invites viewers into a world that he has created using several different writing and directing styles. The previews give little more than even a sample into what the movie has to offer. The dialogue and acting ALONE make this movie worth seeing, but I actually can go on record as saying that I could watch this multiple times and still take away something different from every viewing. The complex humor and dialogue make it a must see, but the acting of Christopher Walken and Sam Rockwell make it even more of a treasure to me.