Saturday, August 7, 2010

Hitmen On Holiday

Hey guys, happy Saturday and such. So I FINALLY saw In Bruges yesterday, but before I get to that, Rich correctly guessed the banner quote as being from Just Like Heaven, a fluffy romcom with Mark Ruffalo, who I find intensely adorable for reasons I cannot fathom.

Why are you appealing to me?!?!

For his victory picture, Rich asked for Christian Bale batman bowing before nipple-suit Clooney batman. Well, Rich, it's not exactly what you asked for...

But what do you expect when you ask for Christian Bale and George Clooney in the same picture?

Besides, I need cheering up, I've dropped from 99 to 98 in the Facebook department so I have officially lost faith in humanity :(

Moving on! So yeah, In Bruges, which I heard from everyone and their mother as this epically awesome gangster-y flick about two hitmen on a forced vacation in Bruges, Belgium after a hit job goes horribly wrong. Well, I totally dig British gangster movies and even though I know in real life Colin Farrell is an icky douche-creature, the second I see him make a face like this:

My insides melt. Anyway, it had been advertised as a sort of Guy Ritchie "everything goes wrong while criminals posture about and wackiness ensues" so I checked it out. And it is sort of like a Guy Ritchie movie in that it does have British gangsters, and the way that all the plot threads and characters all come together at the end, but that's kind of it. The humor is pretty dang black, if you do laugh, you are going to feel bad for doing so. Also In Bruges deals with themes way heavier than the average Ritchie movie.

It starts with Colin Farrell's character, Irish newbie-hitman Ray, botching his first hit in truly the worst way possible. Sent to kill a priest, he also accidentally kills a kid. This is one of those parts where the sheer WTF makes you laugh, and then you feel instantly horrible for doing so. So Ray and his senior partner Ken (Brendan Gleeson) are instructed by their boss Harry (Ralph Fiennes, who is just too funny) to hide out In Bruges for two weeks. Ken totally digs it, dragging Ray across the city and checking out all kinds of old buildings and churches and the like. Ray, described by Ken as "the worst tourist in the whole world" is miserable in Bruges and spends his time baiting fat Americans, beating up Canadians, stealing cocaine from a very pretty girl and getting really excited about a film being made in the city starring a midget. The first bit with the filming is hilarious, Ken wants to go see another tourist sight and Ray darts his head says all ecstatically: "They're filming midgets!!" running off like a kid who's just seen Mickey and Disneyworld and wants a hug. Ken is not ok with this, and Ray gets all pouty and their whole relationship is pretty much that.

"But, but, Ken...There were midgets."

So yeah, Ray careens from suicidal to in love with the pretty drug dealer Chloe, Harry ends up coming to Bruges flummoxed by, among other things, that Ray cannot appreciate that Bruges is like "A fucking fairytale land!" The whole film is very off-kilter funny like that, with hardened killers having conversations about fairytales, lollipop men who may or may not know karate and whether you really ought to retract calling your bosses's kids some less than pleasant names. You get this whole "yeah, we kill people and occasionally each other, but it's just a job, ya know?" vibe from the movie and just makes for a lot of weirdly funny moments.

The movie reaches it's climax in typical British gangster movie bloodbath style, and then the ending comes which I won't spoil if you haven't seen it, but be prepared to swear at your TV in annoyance. At least I did. It's one of those endings that makes me go like "seriously, movie? Fuck you!" but it didn't annoy me enough to like the film less. So yeah, the movie takes a bit to get moving, and some people might find it slow moving (my brother gave up less than half an hour in but that's typical if there's not a fight scene or explosion in that half hour), but it's infinitely quotable, the characters are interesting and all play off each other fantastically, and Bruges is used well as the background without ever coming off like some kind of forced travelogue thing. There's a huge homage to this freaky-ass 70's movie with Donald Sutherland where he goes to Venice and is haunted by this psycho-dwarf, and a really funny reference is made to it at the end, I think it was called Don't Look Now. It's weird.

So, a clever, dark and entertaining gangster movie that was much more than I thought it would be with an ending that made me want to strangle things. Four and a half catapults out five. Damn that Colin Farrell and his hotness. Bastard.

Also, random bit of trivia, there are four Harry Potter characters hiding in this film: Brendan Gleeson is Mad-Eye Moody, Ralph Fiennes is Voldemort, the drug dealer chick is Fleur Delacour, and the priest Ray kills in the beginning is Dumbledore's brother, Aberforth Dumbledore. Go figure.

This is Sugary Cynic saying "There are, according to internet statisitcs, 1.8 "fucks" per minute in this film and that is impressive on some weird level" 'Night!

Ken: (Ray walks into the bar, super high on cocaine) "How'd your date go?"

Ray: "My date involved two instances of extreme violence, one instance of her hand on my cock and my finger up her thing which lasted all too briefly - and then I was away - , one instance of me stealing five grams of very high-quality cocaine and one instance of me blinding a poofy little skinhead: so all in all... my evening pretty much balanced out, fine"


  1. There are some people who may take offence to you describing Farrell and Gleeson as "British", as they are both from Southern Ireland, I think.

    I flipping love this film, by the way. Farrell has never been better, Gleeson is always brilliant, and Fiennes is hilarious. Love it.

  2. Love this movie so. I also liked the ending fine.

    Don't fret about Facebook. I just got one, and thus far, it's worse than herpes.

  3. Unwashed: oops. I knew Colin Farrell was Irish but for some reason I thought Brendan Gleeson was British...which sounds retarded now that I write his name >.<

    Simon: I'm ok with an open ending for the most part but I NEED resolution or I get cranky. Nonetheless, I still loved the hell out of this movie. Also which type of herpes, mouth or genital?

  4. The kind you get from Snooki.


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