What a gas … Paul Dano contemplates his new best mate (Daniel Radcliffe). Photo: Sundance Film InstituteA bizarre indie film starring Daniel Radcliffe as a farting corpse with supernatural powers that turn him into a flatulent jet ski has left audiences at the Sundance Film Festival perplexed.
Paul Dano co-stars in Swiss Army Man as Hank, a suicidal castaway whose zest for life returns after the dead body washes up on the beach and he discovers he can use it as a gas-powered escape vehicle.
But that is only the beginning of the corpse’s hidden talents. As well as functioning as a portable water tank and a weapon (the body shoots objects from its mouth), Radcliffe’s character, Manny, is also able to direct Hank back to civilisation with a penis that apparently doubles as a GPS.
Eventually Manny comes partially back to life and the pair form a bond that goes considerably beyond what would conventionally be described as a bromance.
In a Q and A following the screening, which reportedly saw a number of walkouts, Radcliffe said the chance to play the multi-functional cadaver was “too much fun to pass up”.
The movie is directed by Daniel Scheinert and Daniel Kwan, a pair better known for creating music videos.
“Originally it was just a fart joke that Dan made to me,” Scheinert said. “And then, joking along the way about how the man riding a farting corpse could be a feature, we stumbled on something personal.
“It was an opportunity to explore mortality and big ideas but with fart jokes.”
Dano, who recently starred in the critically acclaimed Brian Wilson biopic Love & Mercy, said he fell for the film almost immediately after receiving the script.
“Once [his character, Hank] was riding the farting body, I was in,” he said.
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