Showing: Sat 21 June @ 18:00 & Sun 22 June @ 20:45 // Cineworld Fountain Park
Director: Craig Johnson
Starring: Kristen Wiig, Bill Hader, Ty Burrell, Luke Wilson
Running Time: 88 minutes
Finding the right balance between comedy and drama can be a knife edge away from flirting with disaster, especially when the subject matter involves depression and suicide. American indie director Craig Johnson thankfully has the right talent on his side for his third feature The Skeleton Twins; some savvy casting and a witty script make this an unexpected crowd pleaser.
After Milo (Hader) has a failed suicide attempt, his twin sister Maggie (Wiig) invites him to come stay at her home with her husband Lance (Wilson). As time draws on it becomes clear that Maggie is also suffering a similar breakdown, but after being estranged for ten years they are initially reluctant to open up to one another. However being siblings, they start to discover a comfort in their shared past and their relationship slowly but surely starts to heal as they find solace in each other’s company.
With echoes of 2012’s Oscar nominated Silver Linings Playbook, Johnson arguably handles mental health issues more expertly. There is a subtlety here which, as sweetly entertaining as it was, Playbook was perhaps missing slightly. This is in large part due to some fantastic performances, particularly Hader and Wiig whose well-trodden comedy chops serve them well (they have great chemistry), but are also more than able to tackle drama . Hader in particular shines as the slightly manic gay brother, who is constantly judging others but reluctant to judge himself so openly. Heartbreaking and hilarious, poignant and inspiring; The Skeleton Twins is sure to be one of the highlights of the festival. If you’re not able to catch it this weekend, then definitely a one to watch out for when it comes out on general release.