• Mike Burdge

Swiss Army Man: Everything Everywhere Matters To Everything


(While this post tries to avoid spoilers whenever possible, it is highly recommended that you watch Swiss Army Man before reading on.)

Not often do you come across a film like Swiss Army Man. It’s one of those experiences that sticks with you, from the first time it grabs you, to all the times you may revisit it for the rest of your life, either in memory or reviewing. The film functions on so many levels it's hard to know where to start, or whether some are even worth discussing. Like the obstacles our two heroes face, the metaphors and themes within this film force us to examine what it means to be a human being, and to hopefully overcome these truths changed for the better. Birth is hard, but rebirth is an entirely different beast to defeat. So I guess we can start with that one…

Swiss Army Man is a story about a young, lonely man named Hank, who befriends a rotting corpse by the name of Manny. Manny’s farts allow him to serve as a "multi-purpose tool guy" for Hank to escape from the deserted island he has become trapped on. It is eventually revealed that Hank and his father have a strained relationship at best. The two accept lies and false-truths from one another in the form of automated birthday email cards once a year. We learn that Hank’s mother passed away early on in his life, but late enough for him to retain the memory of her, as well as his own sanctioned feeling of guilt when he remembers her. While Hank teaches Manny to talk, walk and about life in general, we see him repeat phrases that both his parents have said to him in the past, even going so far as to calling Manny “retarded” out of anger and impatience. In this sense, Hank is acting as a parental figure to Manny, a newborn