Parents' Guide to

Swiss Army Man

By Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Slightly unsettling, but ultimately weird and wonderful.

Movie R 2016 95 minutes
Swiss Army Man Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 5 parent reviews

age 15+

Unusual

The way this two unusual characters bond and build a friendship makes this a really good dark comedy for high school kids. Disgusted about farts, poop and corps but this guys show tenderness.
age 16+

Captures loneliness in a unique way

Wow...where do you start? The premise is quite off-beat and it just keeps going from there. I mean to begin and end with flatulence, not giving anything away with that statement. It is impressive to see how Dano and Radcliffe connect and animate and encourage each other. This film captures loneliness in a unique way. Although it is comedic there are many aspects of the film that point to a deeper sadness. Ultimately, whose story do you align yourself with? Hank's? Manny's? Or Sarah's? I never knew what was going to happen next and that is a rare thing to say about a film nowadays.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (5 ):
Kids say (10 ):

This is the kind of bizarre, original, risk-taking independent movie that's increasingly rare to find in an era of superhero and action movie franchises. It's weird, amazing, and refreshing. Co-written and co-directed by Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, Swiss Army Man is a compendium of strange ideas, beautiful things, some disturbing thoughts, and a touching friendship that can only be found in movies about actual people.

Notwithstanding his amazing performance as Brian Wilson in last year's Love & Mercy, Paul Dano has never been better as a man wrestling with his identity and humanity, finding wonderful humor in every situation. The filmmakers decorate the screen with such astonishing images -- including a bus made of sticks and junk -- that viewers are constantly swept away. On the other hand, the movie's frequent discussions of bodily functions and death, while grounding, are a bit of a turn-off. But that's the only quibble in an otherwise extraordinary movie.

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