You have a pretty good life. You’re rollin in the money as an investment banker. You’ve got a dream house, nice clothes, a nice car, a great wife, in-laws that adore you and everything is pretty much roses. That is until everything changes in an instant.
Last month I got to see an early screening of the movie Demolition at SXSW in the packed out Paramount Theatre in Austin, Texas and the film was truly a joy to behold. You know those old sayings, “you’re life can change in an instant” and “everyone grieves differently” – well that’s what this film encapsulates in a truly remarkable and strikingly intelligent way.
Demolition stars Jake Gyllenhaal in what I feel is one of his best performances to date, maybe even Oscar-worthy. In a film about unique grieving, this isn’t a down in the dumps, woe is me, type of movie. Gyllenhaal’s character channels his inner “Hulk Smash” to literally tear apart his physical surroundings because he just can’t quite let the tears out. Grandfather clock, take that shit apart. Cubicle stall, let’s dissemble it. Beautiful house, smash.
Gyllenhaal’s character infuriates his in-laws and dumbfounds his co-workers and this eventually leads him to striking up a fascinating and weird friendship with a customer service rep at a vending machine company. Yeah I know, you’re like what? But let me tell you, this film is super compelling, told by genius writer Bryan Sipe (above center). I might actually check out Sipe’s other films as I was really enveloped and sold on his writing ability.
Watch out for a breakout performance by a teenage, angst-ridden Judah Lewis whose own storyline of sexuality confusion is downright bold and will make you say “did he just say that?”
Demolition won the Headliners Audience Award at SXSW this year and it’s in general release now. Just go see it.
Jake Gyllenhaal also did a really great talk and interview at SXSW which you peep below too.