Swiss Army Man is one of my favorite films of 2016 so far. It’s also undeniably one of the single weirdest films of 2016, and maybe of all time. The film, which has been deemed an “existential fart comedy” by star Paul Dano and a “fart drama” by co-director Daniel Kwan, is resplendent with sophomoric humor. But beneath that atmosphere of deep-seated silliness lies the beating heart of an earnest, honest story of friendship, love, and acceptance. It’s a story about a dead body who helps a suicidal man want to live again. And yes, it does contain a scene of Dano riding Daniel Radcliffe‘s farting corpse like a jet ski, which is just one of many visually stunning and fiercely imaginative moments that make Swiss Army Man such a triumph.
Recently, Paul Dano came to our studios to chat with me about the film’s controversial Sundance debut, where reports of massive walkouts made it one of the most buzzed-about films at the festival. As someone who was in the audience at the premiere, I can assure you that this is shoddy reporting, but that’s none of my business. During our wide-ranging discussion, Dano and I talked about what attracted him to the film in the first place, what he hopes audiences take away from the film, and, given his diehard Cleveland Cavaliers fandom, if he’s angling for a role alongside hometown hero LeBron James in the forthcoming Space Jam 2. You know, the next natural career move for an actor of Dano’s caliber.
Swiss Army Man is in select theaters now and in theaters nationwide on June 1.