Barry Egan hates himself and hates his life. The only male among eight siblings, Barry is treated poorly by his overbearing sisters. Despite owning his own business, he has gotten nowhere in life largely because of his insecurities. He leads a solitary life, which allows him to hide his violent outbursts that occur when he’s frustrated. His solitude however allows him to think, he stumbling upon a scheme to travel the world on a pittance, travel which he has never done. Concurrently, he meets two people who pull him in two different directions. The first is Lena Leonard, a friend of his sister Elizabeth. Barry is slow to realize that Lena is attracted to him, he making her make all the first moves. Lena is eventually able to get Barry out of his shell, she who sticks around despite his obvious problems. His burgeoning relationship and thus new life with Lena is threatened by the second, “Georgia”, who he contacted in an effort to alleviate his loneliness. Georgia and her “band of …
User Reviews: I saw Punch Drunk Love at the Gothenburg film festival today and I was totally overwhelmed by it. I had really looked forward to it since I love Paul Thomas Anderson’s earlier films. Magnolia is still among my top five favourite movies ever and my expectations were therefore almost too high. I must admit I was sceptical of Adam Sandler playing a serious part. But he makes fantastic interpretation of his character Barry Egan, a small business owner pushed around by his seven (!) sisters who’s miserable life takes a turn when he meets love in Emily Watson’s character. Watson makes a beautiful portrait of the mysterious and lonely Lena who falls in love with Barry.
The movie isn’t just well acted, it’s also magnificent to watch. The camerawork is exquisite and Anderson really shows of his visual talent. Every frame in the one and a half hour film could be frozen and displayed as a piece of art. But the most impressive thing in the film is still Adam Sandler. Every word, expression and nuance is perfect and genuine. If this doesn’t deserve an Oscar nomination I don’t now what will. His performance is superior to the last five winners.
Punch Drunk Love is the way a movie should be. It’s the way you wish all movies were like and I wish I could hang it on my wall. The poster will have to do.