He Died With a Felafel in His Hand

He Died with a Felafel in His Hand3 Stars

I know I’m a bad person.  Last year a friend lent me this movie to watch.  I finally watched it tonight.  Not very cool on my part, because as you can see, I have had time to watch other movies; I just couldn’t get in the mood for it.  I’m not sure what’s happening to me, am I turning over a new leaf?  Yesterday I bought ties without cartoon characters or pop culture references on them.  Today I cleaned the gutters and replaced the downspout on one half of my garage.  I recently picked back up, and have almost finished a book I started back in March.  Spark and life and magic (all of which I had run out of quite a while ago) have finally been replaced, by this.   Though one day, yes perhaps one day, all those things I miss may return, but until then, at least there are a few movies out there to watch and fill the void.

He Died With a Felafel in His Hand is a dark comedy that follows Danny, an aspiring writer who has been moving from house to house along Eastern Australia to find himself, find clarity, and avoid bill collectors, while adding to his misery with a cast of oddball roommates.  The comedy really comes from the roommates as Danny is just trying to coast past their oddness.  The movie wasn’t “laugh out loud” hilarious, but the dialogue and some of the situations were very funny.  There were lots of literary references, pseudo-intellectual arguments, and outrageous characters.  In fact there were a lot of characters, but we didn’t get much development on many of them.

Danny was played very well, and very low key by Noah Taylor; and his long time friend Sam (Samantha) was played by Emily Hamilton.  These two were really the only stand outs in the cast to me, as they had the most build up.  The movie is based on a book which may be worth a read one day, but as it took me (probably more than) a year to watch it, I won’t lose sleep by not reading the book anytime soon.  The movie was enjoyable for what it was if you like dark humour; if you don’t you probably won’t like this one.

One final quick note, the movie did shock me once, as the familiar sound of the TARDIS materializing played into the Doctor Who theme song part way through the film.  Perhaps in some small way that makes up for no new Who this last Saturday night.  Ah well it is late (again) and I have to work in the morning.  While others enjoy the “long weekend” I just have long weeks, with no end.


Posted on 12-10-08, in 3 Star, Movie Reviews and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Jim Birmingham wrote the novel and then went on to a rather successful career in Science Fiction. I tried He Died With A Falafel in His Hand once but couldn’t get through more than a chapter–found it disjointed and more than a little depressing. Birmingham is funny and smart (he once took Germaine Greer to task for her insensitive comments on the death of Steve Irwin) and it’s nice to see his work translated to the screen.

    Noah Taylor first impressed me in the movie Flirthing (with a lovely yet very young Thandie Newton). Since then, he hasn’t made the splash I thought he would–an overlooked gem.


    • I liked how Taylor was both in the forefront and on the periphery in this film. He just sort of floated along and “gently” acted/reacted to everything going on around him. Well played, and makes me think it would be worth while to watch some of his other work


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