Toothpaste sandwich. Pet cat stew. Both these tasty treats and more will surely whet your appetite, not for their culinary merits, but for their part in the fantastically eccentric film Running with Scissors. Based on the tragically demented memoirs of Augusten Burroughs, the film opens with 6 year old Augusten (Jack Kaeding) skipping school again to be the sole audience for his failed-artist mother’s live poetry readings. His quirks include boiling money and shining it with silver polish, a hobby his alcoholic father (Alec Baldwin) finds creepy. Life isn’t peachy, and an older Augusten (Joseph Cross) becomes more aware that he is a freak, or at least feels like one.
Without giving too much away, I really felt like bouncing to the library to borrow the memoir after I watched the film. I found myself laughing constantly, although not everyone in the cinema seemed to share my sentiments. This is not a film for everybody, especially those who don’t find dark humour funny. There were times where I actually felt like vomiting – and I have a strong stomach – a sign that the film involves those who watch it.
If you feel like you’re stuck in a film rut, then kick-start March by watching Running with Scissors. Even if you don’t end up liking it, chances are it moved you – your gag-reflex or otherwise.