Things Go South in This Twisted Tale of Murder

A24 has unveiled the first trailer for The Death of Dick Long. This comes from director Daniel Scheinert, one half of the duo behind Swiss Army Man, the “farting corpse” movie starring Daniel Radcliffe and Paul Dano that went on to become something of an indie hit. Scheinert co-directed that effort with Dan Kwan, but is flying solo this time around. Scheinert’s latest is a bit different, though it still involves a dead body that is central to the plot, and is said to explore the “heartache of what happens when dark secrets are dragged kicking and screaming into the light.” Based on this first trailer, we’re in for a pretty unique ride.

The trailer kicks off by not wasting any time. We see a trio of bandmates getting “weird” after practice one day. Chugging Natty Ice, shooting guns and setting off fireworks. Things take an ugly turn as one member of the trio, Dick (as per the title), gets fatally wounded. It then turns into a pitch-black comedic journey about the remaining two friends trying to clear their names of murder with a hack job cover-up in a small town where everybody knows everybody. It’s quirky, strange and truly the kind of thing we just don’t see all that often, if ever, in the mainstream.

The screenplay was penned by Billy Chew and serves as his first produced feature as a writer. Jonathan Wang, Daniel Scheinert and Melodie Sisk serve as producers. The cast includes Michael Abbott Jr. (Mud), Virginia Newcomb (The Atoning), Andre Hyland (The 4th), Sarah Baker (The Campaign), Jess Weixler (Entanglement), Sunita Mani (Wine Country), Roy Wood Jr. (This Is Not Happening), Poppy Cunningham (Cherry) and Janelle Cochrane (Black Rainbow). It’s also perhaps worth noting that the movie scored an R-rating for “pervasive language, disturbing sexual material, and brief drug use.”

The Death of Dick Long centers on Dick, who died mysteriously after band practice, and his bandmates, Zeke and Earl (Michael Abbott, Jr. & Andre Hyland), don’t want anybody to find out how it happened. Unfortunately for them, news travels fast in their small Alabama town. To further complicate matters, these two aren’t very good at covering their tracks. The authorities haven’t identified the body just yet, but Zeke’s wife (Virginia Newcomb) and his daughter are growing suspicious.

It’s also worth mentioning that the movie’s soundtrack features songs by several post-grunge bands such as Staind, Creed and Nickelback. The score was composed by Andy Hull and Robert McDowell of the band Manchester Orchestra. Not coincidentally, Daniel Scheinert previously directed several videos for Manchester Orchestra for songs such as New Math and The Sunshine. Some of Scheinert’s other credits include Children’s Hospital and NTSF:SD:SUV. The Death of Dick Long is set to arrive in theaters on September 27. Be sure to check out the trailer for yourself from the A24 YouTube channel.

<strong><em>The Death of Dick Long</em></strong> poster

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Things Go South in This Twisted Tale of Murder

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