“The only difference between suicide and martyrdom is press coverage.” -Chuck Palahniuk

My recommendation to you this week is not a comic, or even a book, but a movie. And it’s a romantic comedy at that. Weird, right? Just wait for the next part: every character dies.

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No. But it’s still a better love story than Twilight.

Wristcutters: A love story is a film that is so incredibly and typically indie and yes, as implied by the title, everyone is a suicide victim (no, nothing I like is normal.) Set in what you can only assume is purgatory, an actor-you-won’t-recognize meets another-actor-you-won’t-recognize, learns his girlfriend from Life is there, and sets off on a directionless road trip to find her. Pretty soon the two actors-that-you-still-don’t-recognize meet up with that-one-chick-who-was-the-love-interest-from-A-Knight’s-Tale, and thus wacky love triangle shenanigans ensue. Oh, and it features Tom Waits and Will Arnett.

What really makes this film stand out for me is not only how clever or quirky it is, but how they never once treat the subject of suicide lightly. It’s not due to the fact that their surroundings are nearly post-apocalyptic or that no one can smile, because these elements are part of what make it fun. The reason I like it so much is because of the characters; some are more grounded than others, but all of them reached a point in their life when they decided they would rather be dead. The story doesn’t stereotype it, doesn’t trivialize it, and (most importantly) doesn’t let you forget it.

The story is about love, second chances, friendship, family, and hope. But it’s also about depression, despair, anger, fear, and apathy. There’s a malaise surrounding, well, everything, but there’s also miracles. But everyone knows miracles only happen when it doesn’t matter.

wristcutters

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