2016; 97mins; USA; Digital

Empire ★★★★★

Digital Spy ★★★★★

Daniel Radcliffe doubles his efforts to distance himself from the cosy familiarity of  the Harry Potter series with this singularly bizarre offering from viral-and-music video creators Dan Kwan & Daniel Scheinert, AKA The Daniels – imagine Castaway meets Weekend at Bernie’s with something of the DIY aesthetics of Michel Gondry thrown in for good measure.

The film opens with Hank (Paul Dano), marooned on a Pacific island, readying his suicide. Hope arrives in the unlikely form of a beached corpse (Radcliffe) whose bloated flatulence is such that Dano can use the body as a wind-propelled jet ski, riding it across the ocean to the mainland where he discovers his dead ‘Swiss army man’ friend can provide sundry other survival aides – rigor mortised arms can chop wood, for example – while also providing some semblance of companionship as he tries to reconnect with civilisation. Dano and Radcliffe commit themselves wholly to the freaky high-concept comedy premise, achieving a surprising degree of pathos along the way. (Notes by David O’Mahony.)

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