(at around 7 mins) During the cancer ward visit, the announcement in the background calling for "Dr. Blair, Dr Jane Hamilton, Dr. Jane Hamilton" is a reference to the album "Operation: Mindcrime" by Queensrÿche. The voice is taken directly from the track "Eyes of a Stranger". The album's subject matter of a hitman is in keeping with the film. See more »
The masked killer on the bridge throws down two playing cards. In the first shot, those playing cards have a pattern on their back. In the counter shot (showing how the cards land) the cards have matching front and back - both sides show the jack of diamonds. This was probably done to not have to go through repeat takes until the cards landed with the jacks facing upwards. See more »
It's impossible for someone's head to actually explode, isn't it? When it gets shot.
No, no, it's possible. If the person's head was made out of explosives, it's possible.
See more »
A surprise final scene interrupts the closing credits a few seconds after they start. See more »
This film resembles the type of nightmare that Quentin Tarantino might have if he'd been eating cheese late one night as a script deadline approached, and had he been smoking illicit substances during the day before. You could see what writer/director Martin McDonagh was trying to do: he's clearly a big fan of the sort of excessively-violent, dialogue-driven, actors-playing-exaggerated-versions-of-themselves movies that Tarantino is most famous for. But the problem is he doesn't have quite enough talent to pull off that type of movie, even as a pastiche.
There are some funny moments in the early part of the film. And parts of the dialogue are clever in that first half, as we get to enjoy some genuinely-talented actors like Woody Harrelson, Sam Rockwell and Colin Farrell portraying over-the-top mad, bad, drunk and dangerous-to-know uber-versions of the type of characters they've played in so many other movies. But, sadly, that first half is where any potential ends.
The second half of the movie consists of a much stranger and altogether less engaging plot. I can only imagine it was written under the influence of hallucinogens, as it very much had a look and feel that I imagine was meant to be poignant and dreamlike, but in actuality resembled the type of drunk, rambling conversations you have with people at a party at 2am when they've imbibed too much and you are stone cold sober. Which is to say that second half was long-winded, repetitive, embarrassingly incoherent whilst trying to be profound, and ultimately pointless.
It's a real shame to see talent wasted like this. I like and respect all of the main actors a lot, and have enjoyed much of their other work. But even Christopher Walken, whose performances in so many other movies was encapsulating, is here handicapped by a script that no actor could make engaging. Some of the other leads mentioned above at least get one or two funny scenes in that first half, but Walken's part doesn't even get that much.
All-in-all, I don't recommend this. Like most movies about writing movies, it's not as engaging as writers seem to think.
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