Blog Master G

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Punch-Drunk Love

Sunday, November 3rd, 2002 · No Comments

A harmonium dumped in the street by a taxi van that flips down the road at extreme velocity. Glass-handled plungers filled with dice. Mountains of Healthy Choice pudding. These are just a few of the highlights from Adam Sandler’s latest flick, his first that’s not your average ha-ha comedy.

Saturday afternoon Jen and I saw Punch-Drunk Love, which also stars Emily Watson. It’s one of those movies where you’re asking yourself, “What the fuck?” from Scene One. It’s a movie that you won’t immediately understand and one that’s not easy to watch. And that’s exactly why I enjoyed it so much.

Most movies today don’t really affect people — or make them feel any particular way. Punch-Drunk Love is not your average movie. Watching it makes you uncomfortable.

In a nutshell, the flim is about an average guy (Barry Egan) who owns a business and is depressed, maybe even bi-polar. He has 7 sisters who treat him like shit, which surely impacts his psychology. In the beginning, he doesn’t really care about much or even like himself. Then the harmonium shows up (symbolic of a forthcoming change in the music of his life). Shortly thereafter, he meets a woman named Lana Leonard (Watson) who understands him (she turns out to be a friend of one his sisters).

In his loneliness, Barry decides one night to call a phone-sex service. This is the beginning of a series of events that involve his being pursued by brothers from Utah who beat him up. At first, he doesn’t care. Then he begins to fall in love with Lana. He begins to care about himself and decides he doesn’t want to be pushed around anymore.

When the thugs from Utah smash into Barry’s car and hurt Lena, he kicks their asses because they hurt her — and he has a reason to care. After a nerve-wracking phone call (scarier than most scenes in The Ring), Barry flies to Utah to tell the sex-phone boss that the attacks must stop. He tells the guy that he has love in his life, which makes him stronger than he’s ever been.

Toward the end of the movie, Barry carries the harmonium to Lana’s apartment, as if inviting her into his life. In the final scene, the harmonium is back in Barry’s warehouse and he is learning to play it. He now has music in his life.

Tags: movies