You know, there are days when you give up. For forty-year-old lonely nurse Ruth (Melanie Lynskey), this day has come. First, a patient died while on duty. However, the patient was a very unpleasant old woman, a notorious racist who constantly poured obscenities, so Ruth was not very sad about her. Then, on the path of her house, the neighbor’s dog shit – a very strange and also lonely guy named Tony (Elijah Wood), who walks the dog, immersed in listening to music at high volume, so he does not notice anything around.
But worst of all, Ruth was also robbed that day: someone broke into her house, rummaged through her things and stole a laptop, some medicines and, most offensively, her grandmother’s silverware, which Ruth cherished very much.
Police detective William Bendix (Gary Anthony Williams) Ruth, who arrived on a call, was not happy with anything. Bendix believes that Ruth simply did not close the door herself – no signs of forced entry were found – and the police have more important things to do than investigate some missing old silver.
And even when Ruth made a cast of the robber’s footprint and when she said that she had found the address of the stolen laptop on her smartphone, Bendix did not manage to tear his ass off the chair: he had a breakup with his wife, he was not up to it.
But then Ruth herself, as they say, started up. She wants to go to the address where the stolen laptop is located and claim it back. Of course, it is dangerous to travel alone, but she already has very few acquaintances, and those that are do not want to help.
Then Ruth turns to that very neighbor Tony: he, of course, is a little crazy, but he is fond of all kinds of martial arts, he has nunchucks, shurikens and other oriental crap. Interestingly, Tony does not refuse, and the two of them go to get a laptop.
The film is not new, 2017, for some reason I missed it at one time, but recently I came across a recommendation somewhere in the Facebook feed and decided to read it – I liked the review.
I must say that I looked with great interest. Despite the fact that this is a directorial debut for director Macon Blair (he is generally known primarily as an actor and screenwriter), the film is professionally directed: it is clear that the director (who is also a screenwriter) understands well what he is shooting, how and why.
Yes, the influence of the Coen brothers is visible here, and the raid on the house in the finale is made more in the Tarantino style, well, that’s good: it’s always better when the picture resembles the films of the Coen brothers, and not the films of Sarik Andreasyan.
At the same time, the plot of this film brings to mind two pictures from the series “when it’s enough, then something needs to be done about it” – Joel Schumacher’s good, but still mainstream film “I’ve had enough” and the deliciously badass “God Bless America” Bobket Goldwaite.
Here, of course, there is much less sloppiness: the main characters, although they are both, to a certain extent, freaks, are fighting not so much with the system, although they are annoyed by a lot in the behavior of people in this life, but with this particular scumbag who robbed Ruth’s house. But in this fight they also put their general disappointment in what is happening in this world, and the main leitmotif of all this is very clearly expressed in the film: “Why don’t people stop being such assholes?”
This is the question that Ruth and Tony are investigating, and to this question they, of course, will not get an answer: they will solve a highly specialized problem, they will solve it in some way, and it is not their fault that this will eventually lead to a specifically murderous bacchanalia. And people will not stop being specific assholes, there is no doubt about that!
Melanie Lynskey as Ruth – really liked. Such a vital and recognizable type. A woman with a failed personal life, at the same time quite pretty, but too vulnerable and reflective. But at the same time, she is capable of serious deeds, especially if she gets it, and this situation certainly got her.
Elijah Wood perfectly played this Tony: a strange guy, passionate about all sorts of martial arts, in which, to be honest, he did not succeed much, but Tony compensates for the lack of martial skills with determination and a certain fearlessness.
Well, I also really liked Christine Woods, who played Meredith Rumack, the wife of a rich man, Chris Rumack, whose mansion Ruth and Tony came to as a result of their research. The scene with Meredith, who is pretty drunk, yearning like Block in a posh mansion, so she quickly blurts out all sorts of family secrets, is just great.
The picture is very interestingly staged, there are many colorful scenes in it that can escape the attention of viewers who are waiting for specific actions, but these scenes are a great pleasure for those who know how to pay attention to little things. And there are many episodes where the little things are very important. The way Ruth walks home from work, the way she visits the supermarket, the way she chats with the man at the bar where she drinks beer and reads fiction, the way she interacts with her friend and her husband is really well done and not something you would expect from a rookie director.
The only thing I can’t forgive the director for is the last five minutes of the film. Why, Macon, why? Well, everything was arranged correctly: neatly, clearly and in a single style, but why did you have to slide into this at the very end?!
But this is, perhaps, my only complaint about the picture, otherwise I liked everything very much: the plot, the way it was staged, and the way it was played. It’s good that you didn’t miss this movie.
PS By the way, in United Statesn-language reviews often complain about the somewhat cumbersome title of the picture. So they just don’t know. This is a reference to the title of the famous song I Ain’t Got No Home in This World Anymore by country music artist Woody Guthrie, who reworked an old religious gospel song for this song, completely changing the original message of the text. This song has been sung by many, including Bruce Springsteen.
I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore movie meaning
Director: Macon Blair Cast: Melanie Lynskey, Elijah Wood, David Yow, Devon Graye, Jane Levy, Gary Anthony Williams, Christine Woods, Robert Longstreet, Lee Addy, Myron Natwick
Black humor tragicomedy, USA, 2017, 93 min.