“Wristcutters: A Love Story” is exactly what it says on the title – a love story, albeit with a bizarre yet entertaining twist.
“Wristcutters: A Love Story” is a film by Croatian director Goran Dukić released in 2006. It’s a black rom-com, to be specific, and it starred Patrick Fugit, Shannyn Sossamon, and Shea Whigham. It’s based on the short story “Kneller’s Happy Campers” penned by Israeli writer Etgar Keret.
“Wristcutters” is set mostly in a sort of afterlife realm where people who have taken their own lives go. It’s where the lead character Zia (Fugit) finds himself after, well, offing himself by means of cutting his wrists. He learns quickly that life after death wasn’t so great either, at least for him, as he finds himself “living” in a somber world.
One day, though, Zia learns that his girlfriend Desiree (Leslie Bibb) had committed suicide as well. With Eugene in tow, the duo sets off on an aimless road trip to find her.
Some time during the trip they meet Mikal (Sossamon), who claims that she was placed in that world by accident because, as she says, she didn’t kill herself. Mikal hitches a ride with Zia and Eugene to find the “people in charge” so she could make her plight heard.
The rest of the film basically tells of the adventures that the trio finds themselves in, which include meeting and joining a man named Kneller (Tom Waits), a peculiar man who leads a commune, witnessing miracles, and encountering a sort of cult.
The first thing I liked about “Wristcutters” is its peculiar but imaginative setting. It’s actually what convinced me to watch the movie even without knowing what it’s all about. I also liked how it employed muted colors (fun fact: “Wristcutters” was supposed to be shot entirely on Kodak super-16 color infrared film, but was instead shot using normal film stock that was just manipulated during post-processing because the former method was deemed time-consuming), as well as the lack of ambient music to emphasize the dreariness of the setting. It’s those things that are usually taken for granted when watching movies, with one’s full concentration on the story, but it’s also these that make all the difference sometimes.
As for the story, I actually ended up enjoying it despite not being a big fan of romantic films. Well, to be fair, “Wristcutters” isn’t your usual romantic film, anyway! It’s a very interesting movie all in all, one that you wouldn’t want to miss!
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