Wristcutters: A Love Story Review

by Ed Lau on January 8, 2008

Wristcutters: A Love Story

This is a strange movie…but then that should be expected of a movie about suicide.

You may remember Patrick Fugit from Almost Famous, a great film about a kid reporter on the road with a rock band. Although it’s been years since, he looks pretty much like the same underdog guy who you can’t help but root for. Fugit plays the unfortunately named Zia, who cuts his wrists after his girlfriend, Desiree, breaks up with him…probably because his name is so ridiculous. Who the hell would name their kid Zia? Maybe for a girl but for a dude, man…he must’ve gotten his ass kicked in elementary school more than once.

Folks who take their own lives experience an afterlife that is entirely separate from heaven and hell. It’s really a lot like actual life but crappier. Everything is a little worse, a little more boring and no one ever smiles. Soon after arriving, Zia meets Eugene, a Russian rocker who electrocuted himself on-stage. Strangely enough, Eugene lives with his entire family, who all killed themselves at some point. The two hang out, drink beers and attempt to pick up girls. Zia is stuck in a bit of a rut and finds himself missing Desiree more and more as each extremely ordinary day passes.

Wristcutters: A Love Story, Patrick Fugit, Shannyn Sossamon

It’s unknown exactly how big this suicide afterlife is but later on, Zia meets one of his friends who killed himself awhile after himself, who tells him that Desiree also offed herself a month after he did and that she is probably somewhere in the same strange world. Zia immediately convinces Eugene to help him search for her since…well, what else does Eugene have to do anyways?

The usual desert road trip ensues with stops in strange locations that contain even stranger people who have all killed themselves. They also meet hitchhiker Mikal (who the hell named these characters?), who believes she’s here by mistake and is searching for the people in charge of wherever the heck they happen to be.

Wristcutters: A Love Story, Patrick Fugit, Shannyn Sossamon

I’m not going to give away any more. Wristcutters is quite a sweet but cliche story and all the actors are perfect for their roles. As mentioned, Fugit does well as a sort of underdog and Shannyn Sossamon is in her element as the hip, quirky and a bit angry chick she usually plays. The bleak, washed out way the film is shot works very well with the script, accentuating how busted the suicide world is with broken, buried cars everywhere, misspelled signs and everything looks worn down.

However, although the setting is quite original and interesting, the storyline is really rather typical and the ending feels abrupt and doesn’t fit well with the rest of the film. Some may find the film a bit slow in developing and it certainly seems longer than the 91 minute runtime but that’s really the cinematography and script playing tricks on you.

There are some subtle and amusing moments in the film that make it worthwhile but overall, there’s such potential for more, given the interesting choice in subject matter and fictional world. So while it is worth a look if you’re interested, I can’t help but feel disappointed since it could’ve been better.

Verdict: 7.0 out of 10

in Entertainment

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

sir jorge January 9, 2008 at 11:12 am

I wanted to see this one, but never got around to it. Looks Like I should consider it.

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