DVD Release Date: January 29, 2013
Theatrical Release Date: October 12, 2012
Rating: R (for strong violence, bloody images, pervasive language, sexuality/nudity and some drug use
Genre: Dark comedy/Crime
Run Time: 109 min.
Director: Martin McDonagh
Cast: Colin Farrell, Woody Harrelson, Sam Rockwell, Christopher Walken, Tom Waits, Abbie Cornish, Olga Kurylenko

Like last year’s box office hit Horrible Bosses, where Jason Bateman, Jason Sudeikis, and Charlie Day play regular guys who decide murder is okay as long as it’s for a worthy cause, the bloodthirsty madmen of Seven Psychopaths embrace an equally warped ethos.

To wit, they only kill people who’ve killed other people. Or in the case of a slightly unhinged dog lover like Charlie (Woody Harrelson, The Hunger Games), the odd exception is made for anyone who steals his beloved shih tzu, Bonny. His sadistic heart has a soft spot for that ball of fur, and anyone involved with her disappearance is officially on the fast track for the Afterlife.

Coincidentally enough, a struggling screenwriter named Marty (Colin Farrell, Total Recall) unexpectedly finds himself entangled in the company of these titular criminals as he pens the movie script with nothing more than a promising title, Seven Psychopaths. Not making much progress after days and days of heavy drinking (he chalks it up to being a writer—and Irish) and losing his girlfriend (Abbie Cornish, Elizabeth) by insulting her at her own birthday party (an understatement, really), his friend Billy (Sam Rockwell, Iron Man 2) offers his assistance, not that Marty wants it, mind you.

But the classified ad that Billy ends up posting in the local newspaper immediately garners attention since he’s now invited anyone who has psychopathic tendencies—or knows someone who does—to stop by Marty’s place for an interview since he’s a little short on characters at the moment. Of course when a creepy guy shows up at your door with a bunny, most people immediately dial 911. Feeling fresh out of any other promising options, however, Marty reluctantly invites him in for a chat that yields some frightening but potentially page-turning results.

Also making his way into Marty and Bill’s orbit is the aforementioned dog thief himself, Hans (Christopher Walken, Catch Me If You Can). Trying to earn a quick buck for his wife’s cancer treatment, Hans gets to play the hero for a profit. And since Walken has seemingly never met a crazy guy he doesn’t like in nearly six decades of acting, it’s not surprising that his character is so much more than just a pet profiteer. He’s just one of the seven psychopaths and a total standout from beginning to end.

With a madcap, they’re-just-making-it-up-as-they-go quality, Seven Psychopaths makes the most of a lean storyline, namely seeing the worst possible scenario play out for a Hollywood hack with a severe case of writer’s block. Like a Coen Brothers or Quentin Tarantino film, Seven Psychopaths is a film full of flawed people (some pure evil, some well-meaning) and jaw-dropping bursts of violence that won’t likely be the masses’ proverbial cup of tea.