8. HAPPINESS (1998)

Director: Todd Solondz
James Gunn says: In some ways, I think Happiness is the darkest film on this list. When you have the father sitting with his son at the end of the movie, and his son finds out that dad has been molesting all these people, and the son looks up and says, “Daddy, does that mean you would fuck me?” He’s just found out that his dad is guilty of child molestation. The dad looks up and says, “No, I would just look at you and jerk off.” [Laughs.] It’s too much!

And the movie is really sad. It’s almost mean-spirited. Honestly, it’s the most mean-spirited movie on this list. Todd Solondz seems to have absolutely no love for his characters, and he’s a very different director from me in that way. All of my characters are really angry, dark, and fucked up, but I really love them—even the bad guys. In Happiness, there’s no sense of that love; in fact, it’s an utterly loveless affair, but very funny and a fantastically acted and shot movie.

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