Saturday, May 09, 2009
Ah, Zooey Deschanel. The ultimate Manic Pixie Dream Girl, who plays pretty much the same character in every movie and TV show she comes across. She's always slightly aloof, struggling with inner turmoil, falling for sad sack losers and inspiring them to greater heights, then hurling herself into self-caused turmoil in order to be redeemed by her faceless beau.
The indie spinner Gigantic holds form. This time her character has the ultimate Manic Pixie Dream Girl name, Harriet "Happy" Lolly. She meets her man-slave du jour, a mattress salesman named Brian (Paul Dano), by wandering into his shop and falling asleep on one of his beds. She's there to pay for merchandise bought by her dad, Al (John Goodman, playing just as awesome a racist windbag as he did in The Big Lebowski).
Brian is pretty much a directionless loser who saves himself by falling for Happy. His screenwriter-device quirks are that he's obsessed with adopting a Chinese baby and has a tendency to be randomly attacked, whether it be by homeless guys on the street or randomly shot at, Dick Cheney style, on a hunting trip.
Gigantic is ultra-emo but sort of funny, and it's got Zooey, so that should give you enough evidence about whether or not you need to see this. The answer, of course, is that you do, because Happy would be sad if you didn't want to see her story. And you wouldn't like a Manic Pixie Dream Girl when she's angry.