Swiss Army Man

I wasn’t sure what to make of this movie. It’s a weird fantasy-type movie where a man encounters a dead body, which turns out to be more than a dead body. This body can produce drinking water, and limbs that can be used as cutting tools. But more than the surrealism of the whole thing, the movie’s events speak a lot about the character’s self-actualization.

Hank was on the verge of committing suicide on a beach, when a dead body washes up on shore. Through excessive farting noises coming from the body, Hank ditches his plan and he and the body, soon named Manny head back towards home. Through Manny’s capabilities, Hank was able to survive in the forest, and a bond between them is formed.

As the film progresses, there are signs that point to Hank’s mental breakdown, but more than that, the presence of Manny allows Hank to live. Manny, in a sense plays a representation of Hank’s current self – unwilling to do anything, unsure about his self, lifeless. All of that is buried under the comedic stance the film took, playing out Manny’s many capabilities, no matter how weird it might be.

The spin on what is, in its essence, an archetypal indie film is what had me on board, and it works. It’s funny in a non-raunchy manner, and its approach doesn’t take away the core of the film. Paul Dano is fantastic as Hank, and Daniel Radcliffe has added another impressive feat in his resume.

Cast: Paul Dano, Daniel Radcliffe, Mary Elizabeth Winstead
Director: Dan Kwan, Daniel Scheinert

Year: 2016


  1. Great review! I liked this. I was expecting it to be so stupid but it had a lot of heart.

    1. Thanks! I had the same expectations, but I'm glad it turned out more than that.

  2. I'm with you all the way on this one. I think I loved it, but I can't explain why. I mean, this is probably the weirdest movie to try and explain to anyone!
    - Allie

    1. The premise will either make you curious enough to watch it, or turn you off but saying more than the basics will spoil things.