Eulogy is a devilishly funny film. It manages to put the humour in the most serious of situations – death.
A black comedy set in the North East US, follows the interactions of a middle class American family thats more than slightly dysfunctional. The movie revolves around the death of a certain Mr collins (rip torn) and is part narrated by her grand-daugther (a very cute looking Zooey Deschanel)who is asked to write a eulogy for her grandfather by her grandmother.
The entire family consisting of his two sons – played by Hank Azaria and Ray Romano, two daugthers – Alice and Charlotte along with their families assemble at their grandmother’s house for the funeral. Right from the start, its evident that the family-members doesnt get along so well.
Constant character assassinations, bickering and shouting are interspersed by sudden attractions where you’d least expect and other surprises. Romano plays a character far far from his ‘Raymond’ persona.
The show stealers are Romano’s twin sons – who are about eleven(called ted and fred in the movie). Sample this – a conversation with their aunt on their birthday as they walk into the kitchen where their Aunt is preparing a birthday cake for them:
Fred Collins: What the hell is that?
Aunt Lily: It’s your birthday cake. I was hoping it would be a surprise.
Ted Collins: I’m more than surprised. I’m shocked!
Fred Collins: This isn’t what we ordered.
Aunt Lily: You don’t *order* your mother. I spent two days making…
Ted Collins: We *ordered* an erotic cheesecake.
Aunt Lily: Excuse me?
Ted Collins: You’re excused.
This and several other such scenes sometimes make you completely forget that the movie setting is about death. But this is actually what makes it so funny. Through these scenes, the film brings up several sensitive issues – same sex marriages, the stereotyping of lesbians in the american society, dysfunctional families, chasing money beyond anything else, etc.
The film also has several twists in the story as true characters get revealed and finally, the ending itself. Recommended !