You know…the funny thing about It’s Kind of a Funny Story is that is not very funny at all… The operational word here is kind.
Humour is limited to what one could find funny about life in a mental ward – and there is no middle ground on this territory.
Either you go the way that ‘United States of Tara’ has gone… yes, hilarious yet very serious…(it’s just like sweet and sour soup) or you go ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’ direction, which is painfully funny and deadly serious.
If you don’t chose the direction, then you end up kind of nowhere or everywhere at the same time.
But no worries, because any time Zach Galifianakis is on screen, you know that something kind of funny may/will/should happen and thankfully, he is often on screen.
Over a span of 5 days, young Craig (Keir Gilcrist) will go from being suicidal to being more accepting of his lot in the world, which is not bad to begin with.
Teens and many former teens will easily relate to the teen angst affecting Craig. Like they say in my barrio, it’s one thing call El Diablo and another one is to see him coming.
So five minutes after being admitted in the mental ward, Craig is having second thoughts…but regardless, we are stuck with him as each of the five mandatory days pass by, and like an onion, he begins to discover the many different layers of life. This is a very careful and thoughtful movie dealing with an issue that it’s hard to tackle to begin with: mental illness.
You will like this movie if: You are a fan of Galifianakis, who is this generation’s thinking woman’s Charlie Chaplin, and who reminds you that his acting range is definitely much wider than movies like ‘Hang Over’ make you believe. You will also like this movie if you are a fan of the ever so lovely Emma Roberts.
You will hate this movie if: You think this will be about the secret lives of folks in a mental ward or if you think it will be a laugh a second…which is not.
Directed and written by Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden.
Duration: 1 hour and 41 minutes