Swiss Army Man is a tough film to categorize and an even tougher film to talk about. It contains arguably the cleverest and most poignant use of fart jokes in entertainment history, so that's a start. It's a film that wouldn't be nearly as good without the combined efforts of Paul Dano and Daniel Radcliffe, both of whom are astonishingly good. Swiss Army Man kind of betrays you, with the final twist really throwing Hank's (Dano) entire journey into question. It's certainly a unique viewing experience that really only those who've seen it will understand.
Hank is trapped on a deserted island, with no hope of escape. The film opens with Hank about to hang himself on the beach, until he spots a fellow castaway on the beach. It's a dead body (Radcliffe) with the amazing power to fart at super speeds, allowing Hank to ride it across the ocean like a speedboat. They wash up on dry land, and Hank drags the body through the woods hoping to find some semblance of civilization. Along the way, the body starts to talk, scaring the shit out of Hank at first, but gradually he decides he's either losing his mind from starvation and isolation or the body (he names it Manny) is coming back from the dead. Hank and Manny become friends as Hank teaches Manny about the nature of the world, about emotions, about love. Manny keeps Hank safe through his many powers, including water storage, compass penis, and karate chop action. I know how ridiculously bad this sounds, but the final product is an honest dramedy.
Swiss Army Man really sells Hank and Manny's bizarre friendship, and the last fifteen minutes of the film are gut-wrenching for a number of reasons. The whole time you're questioning whether Hank ever made it off that first island; if this isn't one giant fever dream as he dies of hunger. And it very well could be. The film leaves it up to you in the end, though it does tilt heavily towards the idea that Manny was real. Regardless, the journey was one of the oddest films I've ever seen, but endearing.