Tonight: The Walker Ruins My Weekend

Masochists unite for local premiere of the catastrophically depressing new Lynne Ramsay film

I’m prepared to not completely swoon over We Need to Talk About Kevin. I already know that the film departs somewhat disappointingly from the structure of the novel on which it is based. I also know that Ezra Miller, the 19-year-old star, is in real life an obnoxious little poseur trying far too hard to affect a poetic existence.

But I can’t winch my expectations down. Not a single notch. It premiers at the Walker tonight, and I’ve got that fluttery feeling—that nerve-y excitement at the prospect of threshold-testing pain. For months I’ve read about this film. The plot (The mother of a teen psychopath who has just gone on a killing spree at school broods relentlessly over her shortcomings as a parent). The director (Lynne Ramsay, the Scottish auteur who elevates misery to operatic levels). The actors (Tilda Swinton, a dramaturge’s dream, and the impossibly loveable John C. Reilly). The narrative (fragmented, impressionistic, often free of dialogue).

The Guardian declared it a “skin-peelingly intimate character study” and a “nihilistic feminist parable.” I am tantalized, scared, approaching the film as I would a flogging. Or an elbow tattoo.

We Need to Talk About Kevin screens at 7:30 pm. Tomorrow night, the Walker shows some of Ramsay’s early shorts, as well as her debut, Ratcatcher, as part of a six-film celebration of the filmmaker. I’ll be there, biting my nails.

Bring the pain.

We Need to Talk About Kevin
February 10, 7:30 p.m.
Free to Walker Members, call box office for reservations
Walker Art Center, 1750 Hennepin Ave. S., Mpls.