'Tyrannosaur' is currently playing as part of the New Directors/New Films series at the Museum of Modern Art.
Paddy Considine's 'Tyrannosaur' challenges the viewer from the first frames to keep watching. Will we walk out in the first few minutes when Joseph has a foamy-mouthed meltdown after being kicked out of a bar? Or when Joseph turns to his dog waiting faithfully outside and kicks him until his ribs break? What about when Joseph lugs the dying dog home as the day dawns behind him? Still here? Okay, good; there are more suburban horrors to explore here in Considine's world, if you're game. For most viewers, however, that's a big if.
Joseph (writer/director Peter Mullan) lurches and curses and drinks his way through a life as desolate as the grey landscape around him. He doesn't befriend so much as take hostage Hannah (Olivia Colman), a religious woman who works in a Christian charity shop. First he hides out in her shop from people looking to finish a fight Joseph started; then he confides in her; then he verbally abuses her and her faith. But he keeps coming back and even though she tries to get rid of him, she eventually allows him into her life. This is not because of the graciousness of her faith, necessarily, as we soon learn it's tested on a daily basis by her even more abusive, foamy-mouthed husband James (Eddie Marsan), but perhaps because she sees in him her own building rage.