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Review: A Practical Guide to a Spectacular Suicide

A Practical Guide to a Spectacular Suicide was selected to play at the Edinburgh Film Festival in 2014. Art is a Lot reviewed the film. Click here for orinal review

A Practical Guide to a Spectacular Suicide wasn’t on my radar originally. This Scottish film somehow escaped my initial pass through the catalog (an excruciating exercise always reminiscent of Sophie’s Choice). Before each film at Cinequest the audience is encouraged to shout out films people have enjoyed (a tradition I LOVE and has led to the discovery of several enjoyable films).

After the third time hearing this title yelled out, I decided to take a LOOOONNNNGGG lunch to see it yesterday. SO very glad I did and I only wish I could have seen it earlier and shouted it out too. I’d shout, shout, shout it, I would. Literally, from the opening credit, the Enlightened Monster Productions logo, I was enchanted by this film. It captured me with its sweetness in that first heartbeat and lasted to the final frame.

While the first 5 minutes terrified me a bit with such thick accents and not a subtitle to be found, my fear was shortly assuaged once my ears warmed up to embrace that lovely brogue. This is a wickedly quirky film from Scotland that truly succeeds in making suicide attempts a comedy. The humor is dark by topic, but so utterly light in execution (okay, poor word choice?) that there is no “shame” in laughing like there is with some dark comedies.

With clever animation and “acting out” sequences, the format is remarkably fresh and effective in telling the stories. Sarcastic and almost under breath at times the humor is of the smiling and constant chuckle variety and there were quite a few “awwww” moments from the audience too, indicating complete infatuation and sympathy with the entire ensemble. I LOVE these people and yes they succeed wonderfully in being people and not characters! This is a super, CUTE film and I’d give this movie a giant hug if I could. An illuminating 4 ½ jewels out of 5 in the review tiara for this adorable and supremely fetching film.


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