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Running With Scissors (Widescreen)

Running With Scissors (Widescreen) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Follows the life of Augusten Burroughs after his mother gives him up for adoption to her psychiatrist.

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Grady, February 8, 2007 (view all comments by Grady)
Humanizing Augusten Burroughs: A Model of Screenplay Adaptation

For those legions of us who delighted in Augusten Burroughs' sharing of his exceedingly warped childhood in the memoir RUNNING WITH SCISSORS, this book to film transformation will be revelatory and extremely satisfying. Until watching the DVD (not expecting a book of this nature could be successfully molded into a film, much less be a platform for Annette Bening to garner Golden Globe accolades for a role like Deirdre), it is impossible to believe that such a fine book could and is an even better movie. Kudos to writer, director, producer Ryan Murphy for taking a one-person standup comedy book and mold it into a riotously funny and at the same time deeply moving story about the effects of childhood on our personality development.

Augusten (first as 6-year old Jack Kaeding and later as brilliantly transformed by the very talented Joseph Cross) is a conflicted child whose mother Deirdre (Annette Bening in an Oscar deserving performance) is a bipolar poet wannabe with delusions of grandeur who drives her alcoholic husband Norman (Alec Baldwin) out of the house, preferring instead to form a lesbian relationship with Fern (Kristin Chenoweth) from one of her wildly dysfunctional poetry groups. Deirdre's psychiatrist Dr. Finch (the always superb Brian Cox) plies her with pills and ultimately is the one to whom Deirdre gives Augusten up for adoption. Finch lives in a grotesque house, but no more absurd than his mad family: his wife Agnes (Jill Clayburgh) eats cat kibbles and appears to be quite mad; Hope (Gwyneth Paltrow) is possessed by God and follows holy commands to bury the cat Freud; Natalie (Evan Rachel Wood) whose perception of her wild family leads her to be Augusten's ally; and Neil Bookman (Joseph Fiennes) a strange dark man who lives in a shed and introduces Augusten to his true sexual identity. In this madhouse Augusten manipulates his way toward understanding adults and free thought, savoring his unusual experiences as fodder for later use, and getting a handle on his own dreams and ultimate escape from his twisted childhood to run off to New York and become a writer!

The characters, no matter how bizarre and wacky, each have redeeming values, much to the finessing by Ryan Murphy of Augusten Burroughs' memoir. What could have been a raucous mess of a film Murphy, with Burroughs' blessing, transformed into a sensitive statement about relationships, family, extended family, and the degree that harsh reality can actually supplant the growth of an artist. The cast is uniformly splendid - Annette Bening is amazingly three-dimensional - and the choice of Joseph Cross as Augusten is completely on target for this re-thinking of an impossible book to film. Highly recommended, but do read the book, too! Grady Harp
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Product Details

ISBN:
00043396159136
Publisher:
Sony Pictures Home Enter
Publication Date:
2007-02-06
Credits:
Murphy, Ryan
Credits:
Cox, Brian
Credits:
Bening, Annette
Credits:
Burroughs, Augusten
Credits:
Paltrow, Gwyneth
Credits:
Clayburgh, Jill
Binding:
DVD
Grade Level:
R
DVD Features:
Closed Captioned, Color, English Soundtrack, English Subtitles, Widescreen

Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Film and Television » Comedy

Running With Scissors (Widescreen)
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Product details pages Sony Pictures Home Enter - English 00043396159136 Reviews:
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