When a movie deals with such heavy topics as atonement, redemption, the after life, death, guilt, honor, friendship, and suicide, it’s naturally becomes hard for a viewer to swallow such heavy subjects in an hour and a half, which is why the hilarious humor of the most original screenplay of 2008 makes it a piece of cake for the audience. Take this example of an exchange of dialogue:
Ray: Why didn’t you wave hello to me today when I waved hello to you today?
Jimmy: I was on a very strong horse tranquilizer today; Wasn’t waving hello to anybody. Except… maybe to a horse.
Ray: Huh? What are you talking about?
Jimmy: Just horseshit.
Ray: You from America?
Jimmy: Yeah. Don’t hold it against me.
Ray: Well, that’s for me to decide, isn’t it?
Ray: [to Denise] You from America too?
Denise: No, I’m from Amsterdam.
Ray: Amsterdam! Amsterdam’s just a lot of bloody prostitutes, isn’t it?
Denise: Yes, that’s why I came to Bruges. Been trying to get a better price for my pussy here.
Ray: You two are weird. Would you like some cocaine?
If that didn’t do it for how about this scene which is possibly my favorite of this little gem:
Ken: And at the same time, at the same time as trying to lead a good life, I have to reconcile that with the fact that with the fact that, yes, I have killed people. Not many people. And most of them were not very nice people. Apart from one person.
Ray: Who was that?
Ken: This bloke Danny Aliband’s brother. He was just trying to protect his brother. Like you or I would. He was just a lollipop man. But he came at me with a bottle. What are you gonna do? I shot him down.
Ray: Hmm. In my book, though, someone comes at you with a bottle, I’m sorry, that is a deadly weapon, he’s gotta take the consequences.
Ken: I know that in my heart, but I also know he was trying to protect his brother, you know?
Ray: I know, but a bottle, that can kill ya. That’s a case of “It’s you or him”. If he’d come at you with his bare hands, that’d be different. That wouldn’t have been fair.
Ken: But technically, someone’s bare hands, they can kill you too. They can be deadly weapons too. What if he knew Karate, say?
Ray: You said he was a lollipop man.
Ken: He WAS a lollipopman.
Ray: What a lollipop man doing, knowing fucking Karate?
Ken: I’m just saying…
Ray: How old was he?
Ken: About fifty.
Ray: What’s a fifty year old lollipop man doing, knowing fucking Karate? What was he, a Chinese lollipop man?
Ken: Course not.
Ray: Well then.
I consider “In Bruges” the “Pulp Fiction” of the naughties. A film daring to mix the darkest of drama with the funniest of humor all in fucking Bruges.