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Explores sisters, in their twenties, their parents, and family dysfunctions. Kay is gangly and slightly askew, consulting a fortune teller and then falling in love with a man because of a mole on his face and a lock of hair; then, falling out of love when he plants a tree in their yard. Sweetie is plump, imperious, self-centered, and seriously mentally ill. The parents see none of the illness, seeing only their cute child. Kay mainly feels exasperation at her sister's impositions. Slowly, the film exposes how the roots of Sweetie's illness have choked Kay's own development. Can she be released? Written by
This is one of the most hilarious movies I have ever seen that deals with such dark issues. It focuses on two sisters, Dawn a.k.a. " Sweetie" and Kay, who both (as we see it) struggle with their psychological health. Kay seems somewhat conscious of, but at the same time unwilling to express her psychological problems. This seems to manifest itself in her sexual problems with Louis. Dawn, on the other hand, seems completely oblivious to the fact that she has problems, and seems to live her life freely and spontaneously. We see the interaction between these characters as a struggle between stifling repression and an out-of-control, externally-destructive unleashing of feelings. The film seems to reconcile these aspects until we reach some sort of balance at the end.
While the film deals with these serious subjects, it is in no way (as far as I'm concerned) a depressing movie. It's filled with comedy, which has been called "black comedy", but in my view the comedy itself doesn't have any heavy, negative under tones. The actress who plays Sweetie is an established comedian and her comedic acting is hilarious and convincing. Sweetie freely expresses herself, in ways that might seem childish to some, but are secretly ways we might like to act if it were accepted. Her character tells us that it's possibly to be so free and unfettered and survive, up to a point.
I love the scene where Sweetie's new, wasted "talent manager" boyfriend is taken to a cafe, by Sweetie's father, in order to get rid of him. At the table Sweetie's father begins to talk about how Sweetie "was such a talented little girl". The boyfriend then spontaneously falls asleep (he has some kind of sleeping sickness). At this point the father tries to remove the boyfriend's coat, which is actually Louis's (Kay's husband), and which they have been trying to get him out of for a long time. The boyfriend, still asleep, then falls to the floor dragging the contents of the table top with him, and ends splayed out on the floor in a baroque mess.
There are numerous comedic scenes like the one above, that weave in and out of the movies' main issues (i.e. control of oneself). Dawn's boyfriend, like Dawn (Sweetie), lacks control over his expression, in this case his actual, physical body.
To add to these delights, the movie is beautifully, artfully photographed and the sets are also artistically satisfying. The soundtrack includes beautiful African gospel. All-in-all, if you're receptive to emotions and understanding them, this will probably be one of the best movies you'll ever see.
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