The Living Wake(2007) directed by Sol Tryon & written by Mike O’Connel/Peter Kline is a delightful and somewhat disturbing trip to the absurd in a similar vein to Withnail & I, Napolean Dynamite & Wes Anderson’s ‘Rushmore’.
The film follows the journey of eccentric drunk K. Roth Binew(Mike O’Connell) who after discovering he will die from a rare terminal disease sets about putting his affairs in order and takes the bizarre decision to beat death by organising his own living wake with the aid of his friend & aide Mills(Jesse Eisenberg). Along the way we meet a series of increasingly bizarre and baffling characters; both enemies and friends, that later form the wake party. K Roth’s deceased father(Jim Gaffigan) is also ever present in the film.
Mike O’Connell pulls off a genius comic performance as K. Roth; a character for which there is no real point of reference. There is a real flavour of English eccentricity to the film; which is reflected by the setting. If you appreciate the bizarre side of comedy then this comes highly recommended.