Much like writer/director Martin McDonagh's last film, In Bruges, Seven Psychopaths is very much an existential, comedic take on the violent criminal underworld. Unlike In Bruges, however, this is a much more reflexive film, taking the Kaufmanesque approach at writing the film on the screen from within the film on the screen. McDonagh proves to be gymnastically adept at balancing the plot with the art of screenwriting as displayed on screen, knowingly toying with the characters and the audience alike in a cheeky but charming way. Not surprisingly (at least for any of us who saw his Oscar-winning feature-length debut), Seven Psychopaths is an extremely pleasing and exceedingly funny trip through madcap shoot-'em-up the likes of the best of the Elmore Leonard adaptations.
For its colorful cast of characters, the script is pretty damn smart, weaving subplots in and out of the narrative with an ease and dexterity that is hard not to marvel at. The humor offsets the violence, and the film is not so in love with itself as to not take potshots at itself, such as its hammering of Marty for not writing any female characters of any import. When all is said and done, you are left with a grin on your face and a desire to sit through the credits to see if there are any messages to strong hippie killing women.